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2015 Off To A Strong Start!
Retail sales ended the year strong posting a December increase of 3.2% over December 2014. According to Thomson Reuters, consumer confidence is currently at 98.2 which is up from 93.6 during December 2014. To put these numbers in perspective, the current level reflects an 11 year high. Gas prices remain down which puts more cash in the consumer’s pocket. At these current gas prices, the savings would add on average an additional $750 to the pocket of every family. These numbers are all good for those of us that depend of retail sales.
We attended the Atlanta market this month and were encouraged by the traffic and attitude. We arrived at the show on Wednesday and the elevators and showrooms were already busy. In fact, it was the busiest we have seen it in 10 years. As we worked the show, licensees and reps confirmed that business was good, and buyers’ attitudes were positive. One licensee told us they had surpassed their 2014 show numbers by Thursday! During our 3 days working the show, we did not hear anyone complaining. After returning to the office, I contacted a few friends to get a read on the balance of the market and they all said traffic remained steady and all experienced increases in sales. Hopefully we have FINALLY turned the corner!
Curtis ended the year strong and posted an increase over our goal. We feel good about 2015 and our current mix of licensees. FUHU , the maker of the Nabi tablet launched the Nabi Big Tab which is a 24 inch tablet geared towards the entire family. It is a interactive, multi-user product. In addition, Nabi has launched the first ever of its kind multimedia subscription service geared towards kids called Nabi Pass. They have included stories and activities from our Jack and Jill and Humpty Dumpty archives. This new subscription service will be available through their various tablet products. FUHU is a great partner and we are thrilled to be part of this initial launch. This exposure will help to further grow our Children’s Brands and awareness.
Table Top Unlimited will be adding additional skus to their current collections from us and plan to launch at the upcoming Housewares Show in March. We are anxious to see these products in Chicago and hear the reaction from retailers.
We are pleased to announce we now represent Kim Parker and her art collection. Kim’s collection includes hundreds of colorful floral designs as well as on-trend abstracts which would work perfectly on a variety of applications, from home décor to gifts. Kim has been active in the home sector for 15 years with several successful licensing programs.
She launched a new collection of dinnerware in October through Pfaltzgraff. The reaction to this new program has been excellent and Macy’s will launch it at retail in March. She has also had great success in the wall décor area. We look forward to helping Kim further develop her already successful business.
I will be at the NYC Now market next month and hope to see many of you we might have missed in Atlanta. If you would like to set up an appointment, please contact me directly.
We look forward to a strong 2015 and PLEASE let us know how we can assist you with your needs. We want you to be successful!
Director of Licensing