ABOVE: Fans experience the Autobot Alliance Experience from Victory Hill Exhibitions. Courtesy Hasbro.
The international attractions industry and the public alike will be seeing a lot more of Hasbro and exploring its many beloved, family-friendly brands as the company’s LBE-dedicated team reaches out to new potential partners, and those partnerships develop into new guest experiences and venues.
Yes, Hasbro has evolved from a traditional toy and game company to a global play and entertainment leader, and developing our storytelling capabilities through Allspark Pictures and Allspark Animation has been a significant component to realizing that vision. Our focus is on taking inspiration from some of our iconic brands to telling engaging and creative stories in new ways while giving us greater control of the content creation process.
Within the past few years as an entertainment company, we’ve released new stories featuring TRANSFORMERS (TRANSFORMERS: CYBERVERSE, Machinima’s PRIME WARS trilogy), MY LITTLE PONY (FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC and EQUESTRIA GIRLS), LITTLEST PET SHOP, HANAZUKI and more. In 2017 we released our first full-length animated feature, MY LITTLE PONY: THE MOVIE, distributed by Lionsgate. On December 21, 2018, we are releasing BUMBLEBEE, starring Hailee Steinfeld and John Cena.
We certainly take a holistic approach to our brands. The Brand Blueprint is our strategic framework for bringing
our brands to life in exciting new ways. Through insights, storytelling and innovation, we are bringing meaningful brand experiences to life for audiences around the world.
Our one-of-a-kind omni-screen storytelling strategy that utilizes our brands and characters to drive innovation in entertainment is an important strategic differentiator for Hasbro. We’ve rapidly built expansive, multiscreen storytelling capabilities – globally reaching kids and families everywhere that they are consuming content, in many forms and formats, across films, television and new media.
We’re also always searching to expand into new categories, audiences, channels and platforms – and live entertainment and experiential licensing is a priority for all of our brands. Fans around the world feel a close connection to brands like NERF, MONOPOLY, TRANSFORMERS and MY LITTLE PONY, and live event experiences allow us to bring them inside those properties in new ways.
We’ve brought our fans closer to beloved properties with theme park attractions such as the TRANSFORMERS ride at Universal Studios and a TRANSFORMERS experience in China from Victory Hill Exhibitions. Live events have also been successful for our brands. On the retail side, earlier this year, we collaborated with eight Indonesian designers to create looks inspired by MY LITTLE PONY which were sold at a pop-up shop in addition to traditional retail.
We’re flexible in how we work with partners and platforms, and we have relationships with Paramount, a joint venture with Discovery, an original series with Netflix and our own animation studio in Ireland.
We recently announced the world’s first MONOPOLY Hotel, Monopoly Mansion by Sirocco, located in Kuala Lumpur and a partnership with Kingsmen to create, build and operate NERF family entertainment center attractions across Asia Pacific.
In terms of our advantage to potential clients and partners, we have a very significant stable of Hasbro brands – such as Transformers, My Little Pony and Monopoly – that are a good fit for almost any LBE space. These brands have three key attributes: relatability, shareability and repeatability.
Relatability means that everyone understands or has a general sense of the brand. People have grown up with these brands and have experienced them over time which makes them relatable to fans. Fans also share these brands with others and create experiences around them. For example, Monopoly has been around for 86 years, and multiple generations of people have been setting the game up on the family table. Now, they also have the opportunity to go to the Monopoly hotel opening in Kuala Lumpur at the end of this year. For newer generations, our brands provide several interactive and social elements. As for repeatability, this means that people want to come back and engage in an experience over and over again – that’s the dynamic nature of what our brands are, whether for entertainment or gaming. For instance, Nerf is an active play experience for friends and family – it’s not preprogrammed, and the outcome is different every time.
Beyond Monopoly and Nerf, there’s a whole suite of game brands, such as Connect 4, Battleship, Clue, Candyland, Chutes and Ladders… the list goes on and on.
Our brands are all proven in ways that dovetail with what makes LBE successful, and that’s true on a global level. Our brands and IP are global brands and IP. There are fans around the world for Hasbro game products, and development has already been taking place.
Our brands have longevity and power. Hasbro has brands turned on 365 days a year. We are continually marketing and advertising and creating stories and content.
Transformers is a box office blockbuster and one of the biggest franchises of all time – but that’s just one part of what we do. We also have TV shows for older and younger consumers and are developing video games and novels. We are reaching consumers anywhere they want to consume content.
When you consider the value of an IP, think about repeatability. Will it work 5-7 years from now? We keep investing and reinvesting in our brands. For example, Mr. Potato Head was the first TV-advertised toy in the history of toys and games. He continues to be relatable today and we utilize him wherever we can; for instance, he was a long-term spokesperson for Lay’s potato chips. He’s an iconic toy, product and character.
We see hospitality as a great opportunity to have that stay-and-play model, helping to create memorable experiences and continuing to evolve the business. A playthemed hotel provides a decision factor that goes beyond the room rate to the quality of experience. It’s a great mechanism for operators to differentiate themselves and create a long term sustainable model. Hasbro has multiple alliances with hotel operators and we are currently building My Little Pony and Transformers hotels that will feature themed rooms and play experiences within the hotel. We see it as part of the continuing rollout.
We’d talk to any and all of them, first of all! We’re willing to work with any well-qualified partner or type of individual across the board. We want to ensure that they understand how to work with brands and can bring our brands to life. It’s not just about today, but we ask ourselves, can they continue to develop the IP and work with us over a period of time to ensure an experience is highly repeatable?
If it’s a creative, for instance, we’d work with that creative or design firm hand in hand, making sure it’s not just pretty pictures but that there’s a practicality: how are these brands expressed in this experience, and does it deliver on everything the developer needs? A collaborative process, holding hands day-to-day, makes sure of the best chance to succeed. Let’s have the conversation!
It’s important that we understand what we do and don’t know. We do know our brands and their consumers and fans. We have regional leads around the world dealing with regional tastes and needs on a day-to-day basis. On the global side, we are also dealing with design and project management to ensure consistency. We partner with franchise teams and internal brand teams to understand their brands and iterative impact, to help us determine where to go in the future with brands.
We surround ourselves with the right consultants, such as, in the LBE space, Dave Schmitt of Management Resources, and George Wade of Bay Laurel Advisors. We make sure we understand the nuances of what a developer partner needs. Holistically, we have created a team, and we do what is necessary to ensure we are working in good collaboration and to fill any knowledge gaps.
As we look ahead, Location-Based Experiences are a key growth category for us globally. With our familyfriendly, globally-relevant brands like TRANSFORMERS, MY LITTLE PONY, MONOPOLY and NERF, we’re uniquely positioned to expand our LBE business. We found that there is so much potential for LBE to help grow our brands and engage both new and latent fans.
We’re particularly excited about the NERF family entertainment center attractions Kingsmen is building across Asia Pacific. The collaboration will allow us – for the first time ever – to offer a wholly immersive and true play experience that unlocks a totally new and exciting way to experience the NERF brand for fans of all ages. With the first location to open by 2019 in Singapore, each standalone indoor entertainment facility will feature multiple activity zones, merchandising and food & beverage areas that will engage and entrench all family members into the fun and action of the NERF brand.
What excites us about the LBE space is that it provides another touchpoint for consumers to interact with our brands. We can see the impact this has for audiences, along with the ability LBE has to drive business for our partners.
Transformers attractions at Universal Studios theme parks had a huge attendance impact and broke attendance records when they opened. Before that, when people thought about Transformers, they could only imagine what they had seen on movies or TV, but didn’t get to see a 20 foot robot up close and in person. When we had the Bumblebee character show up in person to the global licensing show a few years ago, people were literally standing in line and jostling one another for the photo opportunity. You get a sense of the size of these brands when you give people a chance to smell, touch and feel them. The excitement we see when people are able to interact with their favorite characters is amazing.
For the operators and developers, Hasbro is a company that understands who its consumers are and what they want, and we can deliver this unexpected wow factor that we believe has not been experienced in this space before. That’s due to the breadth and iconic nature of these brands. My Little Pony is just about 36 years old now; think about generations of parents, girls and boys and how this generational sharing connects and binds people together.
People want those shared experiences. Ultimately, that’s what our brands bring to the table, and that’s
what’s exciting to me. We bring families together to have that true family experience. We are a family company that is about bringing families together through play.
In our company mission statement, we talk about ourselves as being a branded play and entertainment company, creating the world’s best play experiences. We’re not just about toys and games, and that ties directly into LBE, which is about play and the fun activities that bring families together, which is at the heart of what we do. Table top gaming and face to face connectivity – these foster emotional connections between families and generations, and we’ve enabled those brands and the multi-generational experiences around them to cross platforms. • • •
Comments Off on MOTIONGATE Dubai to open two themed coasters based on Lionsgate franchises in 2021
Comments Off on Universal Beijing Resort shares new details on themed lands
Comments Off on Acamar Films announces partnership with Italian theme park Leolandia to create “Bing” themed area
Comments Off on Elf on the Shelf drive-through experience coming to LA County’s Fairplex
Oct 29, 2020 Comments Off on Dallas Zoo utilizes park’s new Deva fixtures to remind guests of COVID-19 health and safety measures
Oct 29, 2020 Comments Off on Themed Entertainment Association forms standing Committee on Diversity and Inclusion
Oct 29, 2020 Comments Off on AVIXA and Digital Signage Federation announce D=SIGN: the Digital Signage Conference
Oct 29, 2020 Comments Off on American Museum of Natural History to open new Allison and Roberto Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals
Sep 29, 2020 Comments Off on Christine Kerr: From operations to creative to entrepreneurAfter nearly two decades at BaAM, Christine recently made...
Sep 28, 2020 Comments Off on Alterface: Inside Action League, the interactive revolutionUnique mix of tournament, interactive gaming and motion
Sep 28, 2020 Comments Off on Vekoma: Forged in steel, tempered by imaginationVekoma opens two new intertwining roller coasters in
Sep 28, 2020 Comments Off on InPark exclusive: Anna Knight of Informa Markets discusses the 2020 Festival of Licensing and the attractions industryThe Festival of Licensing, is a month-long virtual...
Sep 24, 2020 Comments Off on InPark exclusive: Three key players talk about Crayola’s new interactive exhibit and the brand’s expanded LBE presenceThis tour represents the next step in a portfolio of LBEs...
Sep 02, 2020 Comments Off on Smaller attractions: Following the leaderHow smaller attractions stay competitive and innovative...
Aug 19, 2020 Comments Off on Nathan Jones: Continuing a journey of amazing attractionsFollowing a long track record at both WhiteWater and...
Jun 30, 2020 Comments Off on Right place, write timeHollywood screenwriter Bennett Yellin authors a new future...
May 18, 2020 Comments Off on Eleventh Hour: The rise of consultants since COVID-19 affords a vision of leadership for the Location Based and Themed Entertainment Industry.To help companies respond to industry-specific challenges,...
May 05, 2020 Comments Off on Inside the time machineCreative Principals’ Geoff Thatcher says now is the...
Apr 22, 2020 Comments Off on InPark exclusive: International participants in Dubai Expo 2020 share thoughts on the likely one-year postponement and the status of their pavilionsLeaders of several national pavilions being developed for...
Apr 03, 2020 Comments Off on Bingo Tso, ACE International, on the effects of COVID-19 pandemic on Asian companies and the attractions marketBingo Tso of ACE International shares his perspective from...
Mar 17, 2020 Comments Off on COVID-19: Reassurances from Beijing and Kelly Ryner (Thinkwell)"As for business here in China, there is a lot of positive...
Dec 25, 2019 Comments Off on California’s Great America WinterFest: Transforming a theme park into a holiday wonderland.With millions of lights and thousands of decorations, the...
Nov 16, 2019 Comments Off on #80 – IAAPA 2019Table of contents
Nov 15, 2019 Comments Off on Meet Amanda ThompsonIAAPA’s incoming chair has deep roots in the attractions...
Nov 15, 2019 Comments Off on TEA 2020A chat with Michael Blau - incoming TEA International Board...
Nov 14, 2019 Comments Off on IAAPA 2019 Chair David Rosenberg: The aqua-manRosenberg serves as the 2019 Chair of the IAAPA Board of...
Nov 14, 2019 Comments Off on CircusTrix CEO Fernando Eiroa: Leaps and boundsInPark spoke with Eiroa about the unique business of...
Nov 09, 2019 Comments Off on InPark exclusive: Interviews with Jeremy Railton and Scott Ault on the launch of their new company, Railton Entertainment Design (RED)Themed entertainment design veterans Jeremy Railton and...
Oct 22, 2019 Comments Off on ISE 2020The annual Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) trade show for...
Oct 21, 2019 Comments Off on IAAPA: “Wear comfortable shoes!”"If this is your first Expo, attend the First Time...
Sep 11, 2019 Comments Off on Netflix and thrill: Greg Lombardo joins the content streaming powerhouse as Head of ExperiencesLombardo brings with him more than a decade experience in...
Sep 10, 2019 Comments Off on Transitions: Leaps and boundsIndustry professionals are making moves and creating waves
Sep 09, 2019 Comments Off on Exploring IAAPA EuropeMeet recent additions to IAAPA’s European team
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on #84 – Everything the industry has to offer
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on Flights boarding now
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on The power of the wearable
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on The InPark Magazine editors: Meet the press Part III
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on New game in town
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on Dubai 2021 and beyond
Oct 27, 2020 Comments Off on Transitions 2020
Oct 22, 2020 Comments Off on Freetouch BYOD technology helps museums and attractions keep interactives in play
Oct 22, 2020 Comments Off on In a virtual format, TEA Thea Awards Digital Case Studies showcase best of human experience
Oct 05, 2020 Comments Off on Smart Monkeys ISAAC at Warner Bros World Abu Dhabi