Television channel Nick is focused on growing its merchandising business through its characters Dora, Ninja, SpongeBob SquarePants and Oggy. The brand has stepped up investments in its back-to-school range which will now have 50 school bags up from the 30 last year with fashion bags being added to its current line-up of apparel, toys, stationery, gifts and novelties. The existing merchandise portfolio is available in 5,000 outlets across 300 cities. However, the company plans to take the count to 100 more cities and 7,500 outlets. Nickelodeon has partnered with 35 licensees like Mattel (for Dora toys), Funskool (for Dora puzzles and board games), Colgate (for Dora toothpaste) and Bilt (for Dora and SpongeBob SquarePants colours and notebooks) to reach out to kids. Cartoon Network and Disney are too eyeing this Rs 562-crore market which is growing at 30 per cent year-on-year. For instance, Cartoon Network is leveraging the strong pull of its famous character- Ben 10, by extending into and exploring categories like footwear, watches, eye wear, stationery, chocolates and, guess what, home furnishing!
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