By Allison Watkinson
Nelvana and Cloudco Entertainment have secured several new licensing collaborations for the Care Bears brand across Canada.
Nelvana is a Canada-based entertainment studio that produces and distributes family-friendly content and ancillary consumer products programs internationally. Nelvana is owned by the global media and content company, Corus Entertainment Inc.
The first of the licensing collaborations secured for the brand is a Canadian-exclusive True North Bear plush designed by the brand’s master toy partner Basic Fun!
Additional licensing partnerships for the Care Bears brand in 2023 include a clothing line with the Peace Collective, new fashion products with Ardene, and a promotional partnership with Kernel’s popcorn.
“Nelvana and Cloudco came together with a goal to create something unique and exclusive for Canadian Care Bear fans, and it’s no surprise the True North Bear is already taking the country by storm,” said Nelvana licensing director, Carly Slack. “Our collaboration with Cloudco Entertainment to create an exciting moment for True North Bear is being so well received by fans around the world and we’re excited for where our next big Canadian Care Bears collaboration will take us.”
Slack says having characters that speak to the country’s cultural identity has been extremely well received. “These bespoke collaborations pair nostalgia with some of Canada’s top brands and business alliances, delivering quality merchandise and innovative promotional partnerships that portray the characters in a unique and authentic Canadian way,” she said.
The new True North Bear plush by Basic Fun! features a smiling maple leaf belly badge, a red and white toque, and pink and white fur. The plush design is based on the True North Bear character from Care Bears: Unlock the Magic. The plush is exclusively available at Walmart and Toys R’ Us in Canada.
“We are thrilled to partner with Nelvana to bring True North Bear to our dedicated Canadian fan base,” said Cloudco’s Robert Prinzo. “This exclusive collaboration is a celebration of our fans and a testament to their unwavering love for Care Bears. The response to True North Bear has been incredible, and we are excited to continue creating unique and authentic experiences for our Canadian fans. This is just the beginning of our journey together, and we can’t wait to see where our next collaboration takes us.”
Building on the Canadian Care Bears promotions and retail partner tour from 2022, Nelvana has secured additional Care Bears licensing partnerships for the region.
The partnerships include a mental-health focused clothing line from the Peace Collective streetware brand, new product releases with fashion retailer Ardene, and a licensing promotion with the snack food company Kernels Popcorn. These new partnerships are expected to launch across Canada later this year.
The Care Bears brand is owned by CloudCo Entertainment (formerly known as American Greetings Entertainment). Since its initial debut in 1982, the Care Bears franchise has expanded to include numerous TV series, movies, published works, and consumer products collections.
In 2019, the franchise was revitalized with a new look and brand mission that was initially introduced in the 2D-animated series, Care Bears: Unlock the Magic. The ongoing series currently airs in the U.S. on Cartoon Network, Boomerang, and HBO Max via its Cartoonito preschool block.