Chronicle Journal: Finance

MEGA Brands announces new partnership with Universal Partnerships & Licensing to launch Despicable Me™ building sets this holiday season

'#MINIONMONTAGE CHALLENGE' RAMPS UP TO LAUNCH

MONTREAL, Oct. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ - MEGA® Brands Inc., a member of the Mattel family of companies (NASDAQ: MAT), has announced today a multi-year global licensing partnership with Universal Partnerships & Licensing (UP&L) to develop a new kids construction line based on the phenomenally successful Despicable Me franchise from Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20141021/153282)

MEGA Brands' new partnership with UP&L will introduce builders and fans to the only toy line that brings the iconic and playful world of Minions to life through building. In stores as of December 2014, the Mega Bloks® Despicable Me construction sets will offer fully buildable iconic characters, locations and vehicles, inspired by the blockbuster sequel, Despicable Me 2.

"The Despicable Me franchise and its dynamic characters have become a global sensation," said Bisma Ansari, vice president, Girls & Boys, MEGA Brands. "We are so excited to join forces with Universal and Illumination Entertainment in bringing these iconic characters and their stories to the world of building."

Builders will embrace their "inner Minions" with the line's easy-to-build and fully customizable construction sets that offer mix-and-match features, such as interchangeable accessories. Each set will include buildable Minions that are unique to the set, for a wide variety of Minions to collect, build and play-out fun and quirky adventures.

"We are thrilled to join MEGA Brands in this new licensing partnership," said Cindy Chang, senior vice president, Worldwide Sales, UP&L. "The company is committed to bringing outstanding products to market for families and children of all ages, and MEGA is an ideal collaborator for our Despicable Me franchise."

To launch the line, seven lucky fans will participate in the "#MinionMontage Challenge" on social media. Follow the #MinionMontage action and visit the Mega Bloks Facebook page to see highlights of the fun.

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About MEGA Brands

A member of the Mattel family of companies, MEGA Brands Inc. is a trusted collection of leading global brands in construction toys, games & puzzles and arts & crafts. They offer engaging creative experiences for children and families through innovative, well-designed, affordable and high-quality products. MEGA® Brands includes MEGA BLOKS®, RoseArt®, MEGA Puzzles®, MEGA Games® and Board Dudes®. Visit http://www.megabrands.com for more information. 

The MEGA logo, Mega Bloks, Rose Art, MEGA Puzzles, MEGA Games and Board Dudes are trademarks of MEGA Brands Inc. or its affiliates. 

For more information, please visit www.megabrands.com and www.megabloks.com

About Mattel

The Mattel family of companies (Nasdaq: MAT) is the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys and family products. Mattel's portfolio of best-selling brands includes Barbie®, the most popular fashion doll ever produced, Hot Wheels®, Monster High®, American Girl®, Thomas & Friends® and Fisher-Price® brands, including Little People® and Power Wheels®, MEGA® Brands, including MEGA BLOKS® and RoseArt®, as well as a wide array of entertainment-inspired toy lines. In 2013, Mattel was named one of the "World's Most Ethical Companies" by Ethisphere Magazine and in 2014 ranked No. 5 on Corporate Responsibility Magazine's "100 Best Corporate Citizens" list. With worldwide headquarters in El Segundo, Calif., Mattel's companies employ nearly 30,000 people in 40 countries and territories and sell products in more than 150 nations. At Mattel, we are Creating the Future of Play. Visit us at www.mattel.com, www.facebook.com/mattel or www.twitter.com/mattel.

About Illumination Entertainment

Illumination Entertainment, founded by Chris Meledandri in 2007, is one of the entertainment industry's leading producers of all-audience event films.  In July 2010, Illumination, which has an exclusive financing and distribution partnership with Universal Pictures, released its first film, Despicable Me, starring Steve Carell, which earned more than $540 million worldwide and launched a beloved global franchise.  With the success of 2011's Hop, 2012's Dr. Seuss' The Lorax and 2013's juggernaut Despicable Me 2— the highest-grossing first-run film in Universal's history and the year's third-highest-grossing film at the worldwide box office—Illumination's films have made almost $2 billion.  Universal's and Illumination's next film, Minions, a spin-off of the phenomenally successful Despicable Me series—starring Academy Award® winner Sandra Bullock and Jon Hamm—arrives in theaters on July 10, 2015.  In 2011, Universal Pictures acquired the animation division of French visual effects studio Mac Guff Ligne and formed Illumination Mac Guff to work exclusively on Illumination Entertainment's fully CG movies.  Fans may also experience Minion Mayhem in 3D with the Ultra-HD movie motion simulator adventure at Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood. 

About Universal Partnerships & Licensing

Universal Partnerships & Licensing (UP&L) oversees NBCUniversal's consumer product licensing, film, home entertainment and television promotions, and corporate alliances for Universal's theatrical, home entertainment, television, theme parks and stage productions. This dedicated division is also responsible for monetizing the company's vast library of films and characters through licensing, branding and marketing opportunities.  UP&L is part of NBCUniversal.  NBCUniversal is one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment television networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, world-renowned theme parks, and a suite of leading Internet-based businesses. NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.

SOURCE MEGA Brands Inc.

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