Warner Bros, the owners of Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny, has been appointed as the exclusive worldwide licensing agent for the UEFA Euro 2004 competition.
As part of the deal, Warner Bros Consumer Products will be charged with creating a tournament mascot, as well as licensed toys, apparel and a premium catalogue. It is likely that Warner Bros will use its Looney Tunes characters to promote the merchandise. The merchandise will be sold in all Warner Bros stores and the company will also be in charge of on-site retail operations at the competition’s venue in Portugal.
Warner Bros Consumer Products is owned by AOL Time Warner and specialises in licensing and retail merchandising. The company replaces UEFA’s now defunct sports marketing company, ISL, which went bankrupt at the beginning of last year.
UEFA chief executive Gerhard Aigner says Warner Bros was appointed because it is able to “look at the development of sports merchandising from the angle of an entertainment company”.
The competition is held every four years and involves 16 of Europe’s top football teams. It is the largest European football event and televised matches for Euro 2000 had a worldwide audience of more than 7 billion.