ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Build-A-Bear Workshop®, the interactive retailer of customized stuffed animals, announced today that it is introducing a new lineup of special friends in celebration of Sanrio’s 50th Anniversary. The classic Sanrio friends including make-your-own Chococat®, Keroppi®, and My Melody® will be joining Hello Kitty at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores and online at buildabear.com® starting August 20, while supplies last. Hello Kitty and Sanrio friends will also be featured in buildabearville.com®, the company’s virtual world, with cool activities and virtual prizes for Guests.
“We are excited to celebrate this special milestone by partnering to introduce an extended variety of make-your-own Sanrio friends,” said Founder and Chief Executive Bear of Build-A-Bear Workshop, Maxine Clark. “Our Guests will delight in the opportunity to share some fun with Hello Kitty together with all her new friends.”
Guests are encouraged to visit starting August 20 to be the first to make the new friends who are joining Hello Kitty at Build-A-Bear Workshop for the first time. Plus, they can RSVP to attend a Sanrio event held August 20 through 22 by logging on to buildabear.com/rsvp. During the event, participants will receive two free Sanrio mini animals that can be clipped to backpacks and other items, as well as two virtual tee shirts for their Build-A-Bearville® online characters. The backpack clips will also be available for purchase at $5 each at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores and buildabearville.com.
“Our longstanding partnership with Build-A-Bear Workshop delivers fun, original, unique experiences to Sanrio fans,” said Janet Hsu, President of Sanrio, Inc. ”They are a key partner in our 50th Anniversary celebration and we are proud to collaborate with Build-A-Bear Workshop on a new collection that incorporates our iconic characters. All of our specially designed products are sure to bring smiles to kids of all ages.”
Beginning August 20, Build-A-Bear Workshop is hosting a Sanrio carnival in Build-A-Bearville. Citizens of buildabearville.com can enjoy treats like Hello Kitty cotton candy and even get a Sanrio-themed face painting. There will also be Ferris wheel rides with Hello Kitty herself and games to win Bear Bills® and other cool prizes.
When Guests purchase any member of the Sanrio collection, they will receive a unique Sanrio- themed reward for their online character at buildabearville.com. When Guests collect all four members of the Sanrio collection, they will receive a special virtual Sanrio Doll House that opens into its own Hello Kitty virtual room at Build-A-Bearville. To redeem the virtual gifts, Guests can log onto buildabearville.com.
Sanrio, best known for global icon Hello Kitty and home to many more endearing characters including Chococat, My Melody, and Keroppi, is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year. August 2010 marks the golden anniversary for the worldwide lifestyle brand that was founded on the "small gift, big smile®" philosophy -- that a small gift can bring a big smile to people of all ages. Today, over 50,000 Sanrio-branded items are sold in over 70 countries around the world. In the Western Hemisphere Sanrio character-branded products are sold in upwards of 12,000 locations including department, specialty, national chain stores and over 95 Sanrio boutiques. For more information, please visit www.sanrio.com.
About Build-A-Bear Workshop, Inc.
Build-A-Bear Workshop, Inc. is the only global company that offers an interactive make-your-own stuffed animal retail-entertainment experience. The company currently operates more than 400 Build-A-Bear Workshop stores worldwide, including company-owned stores in the U.S., Puerto Rico, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland and France, and franchise stores in Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, the Middle East, and Mexico. Founded in St. Louis in 1997, Build-A-Bear Workshop is the leader in interactive retail. Brands include make-your-own Major League Baseball® mascot in-stadium locations, and Build-A-Dino® stores. Build-A-Bear Workshop extends its in-store interactive experience online with its award winning virtual world Web site at buildabearville.com®. The company was named to the 2009 and 2010 FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® lists. Build-A-Bear Workshop (NYSE: BBW) posted total revenue of $394.4 million in fiscal 2009. For more information, call 888.560.BEAR (2327) or visit the company's award-winning Web site at buildabear.com®.
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