Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions Co., Ltd. (ShoPro) has announced an agreement with their subsidiary, VIZ Media, LLC, for Doraemon merchandise rights for the Americas. VIZ Media will become the North & Latin American master merchandise licensee for the celebrated anime property, overseeing the licensing and development of a range of new products in all categories.
Both ShoPro and VIZ Media will be highlighting Doraemon at the upcoming Licensing Expo, taking place June 17-19, 2014 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, in the United States. Please visit them on the show floor at the Doraemon booth, #P200.
Currently, Doraemon may be found in North America through digital manga via Amazon Kindle, as well as game apps for mobile devices. A Meet! Doraemon exhibit was also held earlier this year at the Bernice Pauhi Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii.
The Doraemon anime series is set to premiere in English this summer on the Disney X-D channel. Dubbed English episodes will be seen for the first time in North America.
Doraemon is one of the most beloved character properties worldwide and started as a manga series created by Fujiko F. Fujio in 1970. It later became a popular anime series in Japan and product franchise that continues to be smash hit worldwide, especially in Asia. The comedy series depicts the adventures of Doraemon, a blue cat-type robot from the 22nd century traveling back in time to help a boy named Noby using various secret gadgets that comes from his Four-Dimensional Pocket. Episodes often offer simple lessons to young viewers about honesty, cooperation, courage, and respect.
Doraemon marks its 45th Anniversary in 2015, and the character is also Tokyo’s bid to act as its Special Ambassador for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.