SBJ/January 31 - February 6, 2005/SBJ In Depth

SpongeBob carries ball for kids apparel maker

Looking to capitalize on the hype around Super Bowl XXXIX, NFL youth licensee Outer Stuff is testing a line of cross-licensed SpongeBob SquarePants/Super Bowl infant and kids apparel this week.

Apparel including “rompers,” T-shirts, football jerseys and fleece will be priced from $12 to $30 and sold at upstairs retailers like Bloomingdale’s and Nordstrom in the Boston, Philadelphia and Jacksonville markets, and the Foot Locker store at the NFL Experience, where a SpongeBob character is scheduled to make two appearances.

Cross-licensing was a lucrative business for a period in the 1990s, but the cost of selling a product with two licenses attached and the decline of character-based licensing brought that to an end.

The NFL once had cross-licenses with Looney Tunes and Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters, but the SpongeBob license with Nickelodeon is its first in more than five years. NFL director of consumer products Tracey Bleczinski said, “We don’t do this very often anymore, but the NFL and SpongeBob are two powerful brands with kids. Marrying them should create product that young consumers will want.”

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Foot Locker, Football, NFL, In-Depth

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