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Roundup: M&A, Experiential & Media

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TLL rounds up the top news impacting licensing this week.


Procter & Gamble strikes a deal with franchised house cleaning service The Maids for the use of its Mr. Clean brand in promotions, advertising, and sales materials. Omaha, Neb.-based company The Maids has locations in over 40 states and 3 Canadian provinces.

Fake Louis Vuitton and Prada stores bearing lookalike signage as well as merchandise have been spotted in tier-3 city Renhuai. Mainland China is seeing a boom in fake stores, including a fake Supreme location in Shenzhen (a tier-1 city) as well as unauthorized Yeezy and New Balance stores in Wenzhou (lower-range tier-2). While luxury brands have been predominantly targeting larger tier-1 and tier-2 cities to vend their wares, fake shops have been proliferating in the smaller cities boasting, on average, an annual GDP of under $67 billion and under 3 million inhabitants. These areas are witnessing a booming, increasingly-connected middle class eager to capitalize on their newfound status.

Media Trends

WarnerMedia and its operating companies Warner Bros., HBO, and Turner announce a new diversity and inclusion policy for projects by the companies: “we all must ensure there is greater inclusion of women, people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, those with disabilities and other underrepresented groups in greater numbers.” The company is promising an annual report on its progress in providing opportunities for those from under-represented groups at all levels.

Skydance Media acquires the live-action film and TV rights to ZAG’s Miraculous—The Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir, and is planning to develop and produce the first live-action adaptations of the property for 2020.

The Jim Henson Co. options Susan Dennard’s book series The Witchlands, set in worlds where each member of the population is born with a magical skill set, to develop as a live-action series.

M&A & Investments

After Sears CEO Edward Lampert urged his company to sell Kenmore, his hedge fund ESL Investments makes a $400 million cash offer to acquire the appliances brand. The offer is conditional on ESL receiving equity financing; separately, ESL is also offering as much as $80 million in cash for the retailer’s Home Improvement business.

In the midst of Chapter 1 bankruptcy proceedings, Heritage Home Group signs an agreement to sell its furniture brands Broyhill and Thomasville & Co. for $22 million to a newly-formed entity of Authentic Brands Group and SB360 Capital Partners LLC. The entity will act as a stalking horse bidder in a court-supervised auction expected to take place within the next 60 days.

Twenty-First Century Fox invests $100 million in Caffeine, a game-focused video streaming service that wants to rival Twitch.


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