Maurizio Distefano Licensing announces the arrival of Bluey toys in Italy

Maurizio Distefano Licensing, Italian agent for BBC Studios’ property Bluey, has announced the arrival at retail of new Bluey toys from Giochi Preziosi, the Italian distributor of master toy licensee Moose Toys.

Bluey toys are now available in large-scale retail shops and major toy shop chains across Italy.

Bluey has been a massive success in Italy on Disney+, Rai YoYo and YouTube, and this timely collection of toys inspired by the colourful world of the little blue heeler is a real treat for fans of Bluey, her family and friends.

The line includes 20cm plush toys of Bluey and sister Bingo and six sets of action figures, four of which consist of two characters from the animated series (Grannies, Cousins, Pool Time, Skateboard) and two of which highlight four characters (Bluey’s Family, Bluey’s Friends). There will also be two mini playsets (Bingo’s Playroom and Bluey’s Playground) and, of course, the Heeler 4WD Family Vehicle.

The promotion and launch of the collection have left nothing to chance – inside 70 Toys Center shops there is a dedicated shelf, with an eye-catching layout and logo and a luminous sign. Supporting the launch, the rich media plan will include commercials on all preschool target TV stations. There will also be an integrated launch plan on the social channels of both Bluey and Giochi Preziosi.

Bluey has enjoyed excellent results in terms of views, registering an incredible 10.38% share on RaiYoYo in the 4-7-year-old range, taking second place on the podium on RaiYoYo for total time spent and occupying third place for the most viewed series by children on demand on Rai Play.

Further confirmation of the extraordinary success of the little Aussie dog in Italy comes in the form of the many licensing agreements already secured by Maurizio Distefano Licensing. Several products will be launched in the market in the coming months. Multiprint will produce a collection of stamp sets inspired by the series, Dulcop will offer a range of soap bubbles dedicated to the characters and Diramix plans a sticker album. Grabo meanwhile will bring Bluey to its inflatable balloons, Halantex will bring out Bluey bedding, and finally Dolfin, looking to 2023, will sweeten the Epiphany with a dedicated selection of Epiphany stockings.

Maurizio Distefano says: “As soon as I saw Bluey, I knew that it had strong potential in the Italian market but even this may be an understatement. The success of the animated series in Italy has encouraged many Italian licensees to partner with the property already and this success looks like continuing for some while.”


Bluey enjoys successful launch in Italy

Maurizio Distefano Licensing, agent for Bluey since September 2021, has welcomed the series’ recent excellent ratings in Italy.

The loveable Australian dog has gained many Italian fans since her first appearance on Rai Yoyo, the public broadcast service’s preschool channel, in December 2021, and the show has established itself as number 1 among kids’ channels according to the latest (30 January 2022) Auditel ratings for reach – with more than 19,000 watching hours in just one week.

Bluey is also expanding its global presence with an Italian language channel (joining existing French, Spanish, Danish and English channels who share more than 1.2 million subscribers).

Bluey follows the adventures of Bluey, a six-year-old Blue Heeler dog, defined by her inexhaustible vitality, imagination and constant curiosity about the world, all of which are the driving force behind each episode.

Bluey lives in Brisbane, in the Australian region of Queensland, along with her father Bandit, mother Chilli and younger sister Bingo. The Heeler family are joined by family, friends and community (each belonging to different dog breeds) who are drawn into their games and adventures.

Bluey recently hit headlines around the world for an innovative collaboration with Airbnb, which saw the Heeler home faithfully reconstructed in a real-life version in a suburb of Brisbane. The home is available for one lucky family for a weekend stay and will also host online experiences for fans from around the globe.

Airbnb offering one family the chance to live like Bluey for the weekend

International Space Archives takes giant leap into bedding and homewares through MDL deal

The International Space Archives (ISA) is taking one giant leap into the bedding and homeware sector thanks to a new partnership with the homeware licensing expert, Hermet. The deal has been brokered by ISA’s licensing agent, Maurizio Distefano Licensing.

Under the new deal, Hermet will create a bedding collection consisting of bedding sets and quilts, as well as a homeware collection featuring bathroom and kitchen textiles, living room rugs and cushions, tableware and beach towels. The collection will be customised with images of space exploration mission and the famous symbol of the American space programme.

The collection will be distributed in mass-market stores and in specialty stores for home furnishings. It will also be available online.

Over the past 50 years, manned and unmanned space programmes launched from the US and other countries have amassed a library still and motion photography. For the first time in its history, the International Space Archives has brought together a collection of the best imagery to be made available for licensing worldwide through LMI, and in Italy through MDL.

The Mission Patches, photos, films and video contained in the archive come from a variety of sources including, of course, the American space programme, as well as the international space programmes of Russia, Japan, China, India and the European Union.

Maurizio Distefano, president of MDL, said: “We are thrilled that imagery from the International Space Archives has been an inspiration to a company like Hermet, whose creativity will I’m sure deliver an impactful and eye-catching collection dedicated to space exploration.”

Bing receives first sign language version in Italy through VoD partner TIMVISION

The first sign language version of the multi-award winning pre-school series, Bing is landing with audiences across Italy thanks to a new partnership between Maurizio Distefano Licensing and Acamar Films’ Italian VoD partner, TIMVISION.

Through TIMVISION, a selection of original Bing episodes featuring an Italian sign language interpreter launched on December 24th last year as part of the company’s commitment to offer educational and fun-filled opportunities to deaf children in Italy.

The dubbed episodes joined the original 78 episodes of Bing that have been available to stream on TIMVISION since November 2019. A total of 14 Lingua dei segni Italiana episodes are now available to stream with more to come in 2021.

Eroulla Constantine, director of sales and distribution, Acamar Films, said: “We are delighted to have Bing as part of TIMVISION’s growing catalogue of LIS version episodes on their platform.

“We stand alongside TIMVISION’s commitment to diversity and inclusion with meeting children’s specific needs. We look forward to having more inclusive episodes of the series available in Italy.”

Maurizio Distefano, president, MDL, added: “Bing is enormously popular in the Italian market and this delightful, funny and educational show should be accessible to everyone, which is why we are delighted that TMVISION has introduced a sign language version. The first-ever LIS version of Bing is a genuine cause for celebration.”

Bing has seen incredible success in Italy since it first launched in 2018 and is beloved among little ones and their grown-ups in the region. With more stories in high demand, the latest series recently launched on-air and on various platforms including the new Bing app, Bing: Guarda, Gioca, Impara.

The app successfully launched in the summer and includes episodes and compilations, learning games and activities.

Maurizio Distefano Licensing named Italian licensing agent for Moonbug’s CoComelon, Blippi, and Morphle

Maurizio Distefano Licensing has partnered with Moonbug Entertainment to become the licensing agent for CoComelon, Blippi, and My Magic Pet Morphle across the Italian market.

The move is the latest in Moonbug’s continued licensing push for a portfolio of brands that within just two years, has helped the firm become a powerhouse in the children’s programming sector. Moonbug currently boasts a librayr of more than 550 hours of content, distributed on more than 100 platforms globally.

CoComelon teaches children how to take on everyday activities and role models positive behavior with a sense of enthusiasm. Kids can easily relate to the universal themes and everyday narratives such as eating your vegetables, learning to tie your shoes and getting ready for bed.

CoComelon attracts children aged one to four to sing and dance along with Baby JJ and his siblings as they learn letters, numbers, animal sounds, colors and more. It is available on all major platforms including Amazon, Spotify, Apple Music, Roku and Netflix and has surpassed 100 million subscribers on YouTube and garnered nearly 100 billion views on the platform.     

Meanwhile, Blippi is an energetic and loveable character clad in orange and blue that jumps off the screen with his goofy mannerisms and friendly demeanor. He’s taught millions of kids how to count, colors, letters, and much more. In just a few years since his inception, Blippi has become a global sensation with over 11 million YouTube subscribers and 700 million views per month.

Blippi is also available on some of the largest premium streaming services such as Hulu, Amazon Prime, Roku, Virgin Media and Kidoodle.

Morphle is a magical red pet who can morph himself into anything – a sweet puppy, a giant truck, a cool dinosaur or anything that his human companion Mila’s playful mind can imagine.

The series is aimed at children aged three to six and is available in 12 languages. With over 250 episodes in its library, the show teaches preschoolers the themes of friendship, problem solving and creativity, and is available on a range of digital platforms including YouTube, Amazon, Netflix, Apple TV, and most recently, was part of a deal to be shown on Virgin Media platforms.

A hit with tots and their families worldwide, the Morphle YouTube channel has 9.6 million subscribers and has had over 6 billion views since it was established in 2011.

“The relatable content in these properties makes them highly accessible, involving both children and parents in their first learning phases,” said Maurizio Distefano, president of MDL. “The successes that these series have collected since their inception demonstrates their strength, and we’re excited to help fans access products that include their favorite characters.”

MDL brings Italian fashion brand Premoli + Di Bella into the pets market

Maurizio Distefano Licensing, the licensing manager for the fashion brand Premoli + Di Bella, has detailed the launch of a new retail collection Premoli + Di Bella Pet Design, produced under a licensing agreement with Ferribiella Spa.

Available in Italy’s leading pet stores since late 2020, the first collection from Premoli + Di Bella Pet Design launches with an ‘Iconic’ theme, underlining the creativity of Giovanni Premoli and Dario Di Bella. The range includes velvet beds for dogs and cats, soft blankets for home pet use, raincoat ponchos, gym-style suits and more.

Several other releases are on the way, each one offering a specific new theme created by the two young designers whose bold creativity has seen them dubbed ‘the Stylists of the Third Millennium’.

All will bring together products that aim to combine the innovative and the functional for their target audience of animals and their owners.