Licensed products selling at rapid rate, and new lines rolling out for Q4

Roslyn, N.Y. – The Northwest Co. is playing Pokemon Go, and racking up record points at retail for its licensed products.

At the fastest rate that it has ever experienced with any product line, the bedding, accessories and beach towel company is having to supply, develop and commit new products to more retail partners – all thanks to what Northwest Co. president and ceo Ross Auerbach describes as “The Pokemon Go phenomenon.”

“Since the app became this phenomenon, we’ve seen a lift in store sales of anywhere from 48% to 103%, which is pretty dramatic,” he told H&TT. “This was literally in one week’s time. And because of this, we are now not only servicing retailers we’ve always serviced with expanded placement, but also adding a large number of new retailers. We’ve been able to add our Pokemon Go product to a number of new retail customers throughout nation who are excited and want to be part of the phenomenon.”

The Northwest Co. has been the Pokemon licensee for it range of product categories – including comforters, throws, blankets, pillows, beach towels and more – for the past three years, during which time business with the brand “has been very good,” Auerbach said. “We’ve had placement at retail, and it’s been a very good brand for us.”

But this recent spike in sales has triggered other new business opportunities for The Northwest Co.

“Before the [Pokemon Go] craze, placement for the brand was strongest at mass [discount chains],” he explained. “Since the craze, we’ve expanded and moved into mid-tier and specialty and online retailers, giving us the opportunity to service two distinctive types of customers.”

By that, he means juvenile/kids and adults from the college to 40s age range.

“What is exciting and unusual about our Pokemon 5 business is that the app is absolutely targeting an older clientele, giving the juvenile modular a huge lift in sales and adding new presence in stores,” Auerbach said.

Looking to fuel this growth, The Northwest Co. is ramping up inventory “to respond to the rush,” he said.

“For the fourth quarter, we are adding a tremendous amount of new product, including gifts, to service our new and existing customers,” Auerbach said. “We are able and prepared for this wave, and we’d like to thank Colin Palmer, vp of marketing and licensing at Pokemon Company International, and his team. They have done an outstanding job of working with Northwest in responding to this new and overwhelming demand.”

Source: Home & Textiles TODAY