Puma’s partnership with WBCP for the launch of Superman and Tom and Jerry co-branded apparel, accessories and footwear is an attempt to “diversify the brand to appeal to a new audience”, according to the brand.
The Tom and Jerry collection, which includes trainers and t-shirts, has launched across all of Puma’s global markets barring Chile, while the Superman collection, which includes a Superman caped backpack, is available worldwide with the exception of US and Canada.
Reinhard Dischner, general manager for fundamentals at Puma, told Marketing Week that the partnership is Puma’s first licensed agreement that is exclusively focused on younger consumers.
“As a brand, we have many licensing partnerships that bring to market kids clothing, footwear and accessories, but this is the first to solely appeal and target children,” he says. “Working with WBCP opens Puma up to a new demographic and target audience.”
While a specific target to children is a step change for the brand, the move is part of an ongoing effort for Puma to appeal to new consumers and become a “game changer” brand.
In December, it appointed Rihanna as its creative director in an attempt to establish “cultural relevance”, with plans for the singer to star alongside fellow brand ambassadors Usain Bolt and Mario Balotelli in Puma’s “Forever Faster” campaign, which launched last year.
“Forever Faster” was created in an effort to be more daring and push the boundaries, and move the brand away from its previous fashion-focused efforts to focus on sports fans.
“We have a new brand strategy that roots Puma very much in sports performance,” Dischner says. “However, we have historically focused on developing strong licensing collaborations that enable us to market Puma apparel through various distribution channels. WBCP is important for that.”
This is not the first sports push for WBCP, which launched its Looney Tunes Active food and drink programme in 2007, an initiative that has resulted in partnerships with brands such as Nestle Waters and the NBA.
The partnership will be promoted through print, online and in-store.