|Universal Studios Executive To Head Worldwide Licensing For Marvel's Vast Library Of Intellectual Properties Including Spider-Man, X-Men and The Hulk|
In a move designed to further expand the Company's already flourishing licensing business, Marvel Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE:MVL) announced today that Timothy E. Rothwell, will be joining the Company as the President of Marvel's Worldwide Consumer Products Group. The announcement was made by Marvel CEO Allen Lipson.
Rothwell brings to Marvel more than 20 years of diverse consumer products and licensing experience including the last seven as Senior Vice President at Universal Studios Consumer Products Group. In his new capacity, Rothwell will oversee Marvel's core licensing and merchandising division, the Company's principal source of profit and cash flow. Two of his primary responsibilities will be to develop Marvel's international licensing business and strengthen retailer relationships, both proven areas of expertise for him and underdeveloped areas with huge growth potential for the Company.
During his tenure at Universal, Rothwell helped transform Universal Consumer Products into a $1 billion business at retail. He managed all the Studio's merchandising, licensing, marketing, creative and retail development initiatives in all product categories - including toys, gifts, collectibles, food and beverage, interactive games, publishing, and apparel -- for North America, South America and Australia. Additionally, Rothwell is credited with developing innovative domestic and international programs for one of Hollywood's largest libraries of intellectual property, including mega-brands such as Jurassic Park, ET, The Fast and the Furious, Curious George, The Cat in the Hat, and The Hulk movie (jointly with Marvel).
Rothwell's vision, leadership and effectiveness in working together with Marvel has been instrumental in firmly establishing the Hulk property - identified as the number one hot license for kids in a preview for the recent Licensing Show 2003 - as a powerful entertainment franchise. With over 300 licensees in the program, encompassing over 1,000 products, Hulk-branded products have achieved strong retail sales in many categories including toys, video games, domestics and children's apparel, with many Hulk licensees already reporting revenues in excess of the initial minimum guarantees.
Commenting on the appointment, Marvel CEO Allen Lipson stated, "Tim is an extremely important addition to the Marvel team, who will play a large role in taking our already strong licensing team to the next level. We have had the honor of working with Tim for over a year on The Hulk movie and quickly realized that he possesses the ideal skill set, experience, initiative and dedication to be a key contributor in Marvel's senior management team. Licensing is our core discipline and, despite our recent success, there is still significant growth potential, especially in the relatively uncharted International arena. His success at Universal in managing some of the most popular entertainment properties on the domestic and international level is exactly what we need for our renowned character library at Marvel. Further, we are fully confident that his relationships with the key retailers and top manufacturers in all segments of consumer products will drive our licensing efforts to new levels."
Mr. Rothwell added, "I am very pleased to join Marvel at this exciting time in the Company's history. I grew up a huge fan of their characters and have always recognized their potential in the marketplace. The opportunity to manage this incredible library of intellectual properties is something that I cannot wait to tackle. There is enormous growth potential, both domestically and internationally, for their characters, and I look forward to working with Allen, Russ Brown and the rest of the talented Marvel team to accomplish our goals."
Prior to his tenure at Universal Studios, Mr. Rothwell was an established executive in the apparel industry working with companies such as Mamiye Bothers Company, Cherokee Apparel Company and VF Corporation.
A 1982 graduate of the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism, Mr. Rothwell and his wife and two children are relocating from Southern California to the New York metro area.
With a library of over 4,700 proprietary characters, Marvel Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE: MVL) is one of the world's most prominent character-based entertainment companies. Marvel's operations are focused in four divisions: entertainment (Marvel Studios), licensing, toys (Toy Biz) and comic book publishing. Marvel facilitates the creation of entertainment projects, including feature films, television and dvd/home video, based on its characters and also licenses its characters for use in a wide range of consumer products and services including video and computer games, apparel, collectibles, snack foods and promotions. Marvel's characters and plot lines are created by its comic book division which continues to maintain a leadership position in the U.S. and worldwide while also serving as an invaluable source of intellectual property. For additional information visit the Marvel Web site at http://www.marvel.com
Except for historical information contained herein, the statements in this news release regarding the Company's plans are forward-looking statements that are dependent upon certain risks and uncertainties, including the Company's need for additional financing, the Company's potential inability to successfully implement its business strategy, a decrease in the level of media exposure or popularity of the Company's characters resulting in declining revenues from products based on those characters, the timing of releases and the decisions to proceed with feature films and TV series based on the Company's characters, the lack of commercial success of entertainment projects based on the Company's characters, the lack of commercial success of properties owned by major entertainment companies that have granted the Company toy licenses, the lack of consumer acceptance of new product introductions, the imposition of quotas or tariffs on toys manufactured in China as a result of a deterioration in trade relations between the U.S. and China, changing consumer preferences, production delays or shortfalls, continued pressure by certain of the Company's major retail customers to significantly reduce their toy inventory levels, the impact of competition and changes to the competitive environment on the Company's products and services, the ability of the Company's licensees to successfully market and sell the licensed products, changes in technology and changes in governmental regulation and the continued financial stability of major licensees of the Company. Those and other risks and uncertainties are described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K. Marvel assumes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements.