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Kids to play with Star Wars
Feb '10
Collective Brands, Inc. and Lucasfilm Ltd. announced a multi-year licensing agreement that will transport both Payless ShoeSource and Stride Rite Children's Group customers to "a galaxy far, far away" with the development of exclusive product lines based on Star Wars and Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The beloved brand – top-rated with boys in the U.S. – will be featured on footwear collections in the United States and internationally where the Payless and Stride Rite brands are currently sold.

Under the terms of the agreement, Payless and Stride Rite will have access to Lucasfilm's rich asset archive including logos, characters, creatures and aliens from all six live-action Star Wars films, as well as the animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars movie and TV series, which airs on the Cartoon Network. Under this single agreement the creative assets will be leveraged to create children's product lines in both business units; however the product design, development, and marketing will be executed separately, allowing each business unit to create distinct collections targeted to their specific customer segments and selling channels.

"We are thrilled to collaborate with Lucasfilm to bring the iconic Star Wars characters to life on our footwear products sold through our Payless and Stride Rite selling channels. Kids and moms alike are going to be thrilled by these new products this fall," said Matt Rubel, CEO of Collective Brands, Inc. "Our children's business is an important area of growth for Collective Brands, and this collaboration is a strong example of how we are leveraging the infrastructure of our company overall to forge powerful partnerships and gain access to inspiring licenses that can be shared across our business units in different ways for each brand's target consumers."

Payless will feature the Star Wars and Star Wars: The Clone Wars assets in a new character line of children's footwear and select accessories, which will be arriving in Payless stores and online at payless.com in early July.

The Stride Rite Children's Group will be developing a line of children's footwear that will bring the characters to life with product inspired by the iconic Star Wars and Star Wars: The Clone Wars characters. Target availability is June 2010. This line will be sold in Stride Rite retail stores and online at www.striderite.com, as well as through its wholesale partners including department stores and specialty retailers.

"Star Wars has always been popular with kids and Star Wars: The Clone Wars is bringing the brand to an all-new generation of young fans," said Paul Southern, senior director, domestic licensing and marketing, Lucas Licensing. "We're excited to partner with Collective Brands; their leadership role in the children's footwear marketplace will help us to expand the breadth of the Star Wars properties and bring the fun and excitement of these iconic characters to more children across the globe."

Collective Brands Inc

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