The new collectible concept is set to launch at retail in February after debuting at the Hong Kong and Nuremberg Toy Fairs.
Created in partnership with Splash Toys, the new brand extends The Smiley Company’s famous archive of icons into the collectibles market, targeting kids 6-12.
The first series of The Smileys collectibles series will launch with Team Moods. There are happy Smileys, sad Smileys, silly, crazy, and bad Smileys to collect, along with new and exclusive accessories to create Smiley characters. Collectors can mix & match to show the world how they are feeling. The series will launch with blister 3-packs and 5-packs of Smileys, which include a secret Smiley, plus blind boxes for toy distribution and blind bags for kiosk distribution.
After a successful soft launch to the trade in recent weeks, retail listings are already secured with France and Benelux’s leading retailers including; Auchan (400 stores), Carrefour (500 stores), Intermarché (1,200 stores), Leclerc (700 stores) and King Jouet (200 stores).
Speaking about the new IP, VP brand strategy at Smiley, Lori Heiss-Tiplady, said: “We are so excited to announce that we have already secured key European retail listing for our new collectibles IP, The Smileys, bringing our SmileyWorld icons to life in a whole new way and making them even more appealing to kids. This new world, with characters, locations and stories, will provide the perfect foundation for an entirely new line of brand extension opportunities and deepen the brands’ reach into key categories, including toys & publishing.
Lori added: “As a business that is fully focused on helping kids explore their emotions through play and having fun, the unique mix and match play pattern of The Smileys creates endless possibilities for self-expression. Helping kids learn about themselves and their emotions while playing is important to us; emotional intelligence – or EQ – is a massively important phenomenon that Smiley is uniquely connected to.”
The Smileys retail launch will be supported by an extensive TV commercial, with the campaign scheduled to run in France from February through to June and spots already booked on TF1, Gulli, Tiji, Boomerang, Boing, CartoonNetwork, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Piwi, TéléToon, Nickelodeon Junior, and Nickelodeon 4 Teen. The Smileys will also launch a dedicated website and YouTube channel, featuring a series of webisodes that will explore the world of The Smileys and their friends.
The Smileys showcased at BLE last year, receiving acclaim as WGSN’s licensing industry trend experts revealed that it topped the list of properties to keep an eye on in 2020.