BBC Worldwide signs licensing deal with Japan's Tomy

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TOKYO--BBC Worldwide, the largest non-U.S. English-language program exporter in the world, has signed a distribution and licensing agreement with Japanese toy giant Tomy. The company claims the pact brings it closer to realizing its ambition of becoming a global consumer products business.

Tomy will distribute in Japan a range of products associated with the kids hit Teletubbies, designed by and sourced from BBC Worldwide. Products will include dolls, beanies, watches and backpacks.

"Taking control of the overall product design and manufacturing process ensures the core values of the Teletubbies are reflected in product and the brand is protected around the world," says Jeff Taylor, BBC Worldwide's director of global marketing and brand development. "Through maximizing the profile and commercial value of our brands, we will be able to increase the investment we make into key children's properties."

Tomy also recently announced it will market Furby toys, the top selling Christmas toy in the U.S., in Japan by the end of May. The company acquired exclusive rights from Tiger Electronics and its parent company Hasbro Inc.

Copyright March 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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