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As the end of the first half of 2022 approaches, it is time for companies to take stock. How is the entertainment world changing? Which names will be the ones to watch in terms of property over the next few months? Maurizio Distefano and Michela Marchese Patti, founding partners of the Maurizio Distefano Licensing agency, explain how and why they have a reputation for spotting winners.


MLD ENT: Is there a secret to your success?


“The secret is the ability to understand the potential of each property or brand right from the start, to believe in it and to help it to grow.

“As far as we are concerned, that ability is the direct result of building a great deal of valuable experience over time – experience that has allowed us to plan a strategy that helps us to choose the properties and brands that are right for this agency. You could almost say that our background in this business has given us a sort of vast database of experience that helps and encourages us to pursue success – but never to forget the needs of the market. These are the factors that have made so many of our choices winning ones.”


MLD ENT: And this achievement has been recognized very recently…


“That’s right. Every year, License Global publishes an annual list of the best licensing companies and agents in the world based on turnover – and, according to the data, ours was the number one licensing agency in Italy, the second across Europe, and the 37th in the world. For us that result is very encouraging – confirming and rewarding our daily work and commitment, you might say. It’s also a great honour to be recognised by such an authoritative source in our industry.”


MLD ENT: Which direction are you going?


“The first half of the year went really well – in line with our expectations in fact, despite the upheavals we’re all living through at the moment. We are only too aware, for example, of price increases and the scarcity of raw materials. These are ongoing concerns for our licensees.

And of course, working has become increasingly complex in recent years, not least in the pandemic and post-pandemic era.

We must be able to establish priorities and organize the time that we have at our disposal – and I think that’s exactly what we are doing.”


MLD ENT: What are the goals for the next few months?


“The same as every year: our main goal is to satisfy the needs of our clients and partners. It’s not just about chasing numbers: our aim is always to guarantee we can provide an excellent service to the licensees and licensors we represent, to do an excellent job with the utmost professionalism.

Only by working with dedication and passion can you be sure you are going in the right direction. It’s the best way to get results.”


MLD ENT: Moving on to projects in the young adult target market, how did LIFE’s collaboration with Benetton and Clementoni come about?


“The project with Benetton [Michela says] came about thanks to a successful collaboration between the company and our product development people. Benetton is an international fashion brand with a strong, stylish, almost avant-garde image. LIFE had to be a perfect match for this brand. The strength of the project was down to the iconic nature of the LIFE images and the extraordinarily high level of awareness that comes with this famous magazine and its long history. The result was a beautiful collection for men, women and children: a showcase of the most beautiful images of LIFE that combined beautifully with the Benetton style and attitude.”


“Another project with LIFE was developed with Clementoni [Maurizio adds]. With this brand it was important to find a way to develop puzzles and products that had an adult and family appeal. In this regard it was interesting to explore how puzzles are no longer just about play; they can be seen as real design objects with an intrinsic value. It’s not just about the fun of putting the puzzle together. There’s a real joy in showing off these iconic photos.

Indeed, they are photographic works of art, like paintings.”


MLD ENT: Charlie Chaplin, Albert Einstein and Corto Maltese have recently expanded the agency’s offer in the celebrities category…


“These are iconic names known all around the world. We’re proud to have been chosen as agents for Italy for these properties. We are now working on projects that will open the door to some really interesting collaborations.

“Corto Maltese is a character brand with a strong image, a mix of artistic storytelling with elements of dreams, adventure and beauty. Charlie Chaplin and Albert Einstein are two people who changed the world with their ideas and discoveries. Iconic elements such as Chaplin’s bowler hat or walking stick are part of the style guide, of course, but used in innovative, high-impact and recognizable ways, ideal for personalizing product lines.”


MLD ENT: You’ve had enormous successes with your preschool property portfolio. What’s the news here?


“Moonbug Entertainment has entrusted our agency with the management of all its properties: CoComelon, Little Baby Bum, Blippi and My Magic Pet Morphle… These phenomenally successful YouTube-inspired brands have also been popular in other media by reflecting the changes in how kids access entertainment and thus have expanded the market into new areas.

“Bing, Masha and the Bear, Bluey, ALVINNN !!! and the Chipmunks and Gigantosaurus just keep on being successful. They’re very different from each other but all wildly popular with young viewers, and massive drivers for the success of the many companies on board as licensees.”


MLD ENT: But it’s not just about TV. What can you tell us about Charlotte M.?


“The versatility and professionalism of Charlotte M, despite her relative youth, make her perfect for a variety of projects. For example, at the moment she is voicing an important animated film that will be released in Q4 2022. And July will see the start of shooting of a new film where she will star as an actress and singer. This new film is expected to reach theatres in Q1 2023. As you can imagine, the flamingo fans are already very excited – and so are we!”

Maurizio Distefano Licensing announces the arrival of Bluey toys in Italy

Moose Toys range, distributed by Giochi Preziosi, available in stores from 22 May

Maurizio Distefano Licensing, Italian agent for BBC Studios’ property Bluey, has announced the arrival at retail of new Bluey toys from Giochi Preziosi, the Italian distributor of master toy licensee Moose Toys.

Bluey toys hit the shelves in large-scale retail shops and major toy shop chains across Italy from 22 May.

Bluey has been a massive success in Italy on Disney+, Rai YoYo and YouTube, and this timely collection of toys inspired by the colourful world of the little blue heeler is a real treat for fans of Bluey, her family and friends.

The line includes 20cm plush toys of Bluey and sister Bingo and six sets of action figures, four of which consist of two characters from the animated series (Grannies, Cousins, Pool Time, Skateboard) and two of which highlight four characters (Bluey’s Family, Bluey’s Friends). There will also be two mini playsets (Bingo’s Playroom and Bluey’s Playground) and, of course, the Heeler 4WD Family Vehicle.

The promotion and launch of the collection have left nothing to chance – inside 70 Toys Center shops there is a dedicated shelf, with an eye-catching layout and logo and a luminous sign. Supporting the launch, the rich media plan will include commercials on all pre-school target TV stations. There will also be an integrated launch plan on the social channels of both Bluey and Giochi Preziosi.

Little Bluey reaped excellent results in terms of views, registering an incredible 10.38% share on RaiYoYo in the 4-7-year-old range, taking second place on the podium on RaiYoYo for total time spent and third place of the most viewed series by children on demand on Rai Play.

Further confirmation of the extraordinary success of the little Aussie dog in Italy comes in the form of the many licensing agreements already secured by Maurizio Distefano Licensing. Several products will be launched in the market in the coming months: Multiprint will produce a collection of stamp sets inspired by the series, Dulcop will offer a range of soap bubbles dedicated to the characters and Diramix plans a sticker album. Grabo, meanwhile, will bring Bluey to its inflatable balloons, Halantex will bring out Bluey bedding, and finally Dolfin, looking to 2023, will sweeten the Epiphany with a dedicated selection of Epiphany stockings.

Maurizio Distefano says: “As soon as I saw Bluey, I knew that it had strong potential in the Italian market but even this may be an understatement. The success of the animated series in Italy has encouraged many Italian licensees to partner with the property already and this success looks like continuing for some while.”


YouTube and Tik-Tok star comes to Italy’s popular amusement park

Maurizio Distefano Licensing, worldwide licensing agent for Charlotte M., has announced plans for a live appearance by the YouTube and Tik-Tok star at the end of May at Leolandia, Italy’s popular amusement park for kids.


Situated in a beautiful green space close to Milan, with eight themed areas and 50 attractions suitable for all ages, this park welcomes young and old alike with a schedule full of shows starring the most-watched cartoon characters and children’s favourites on TV and the web, and Charlotte M., with over one million followers on both YouTube and Tik-Tok, and a new single Best Friend picking up over one million views already, is certain to be a major attraction.


The exclusive event will be held on Saturday, 28 May when Charlotte M. will meet her fans at both 12:00 noon and 3:00 p.m. She will sing some of her most famous songs on the Minitalia Stage. There will also be meet and greets when the young “flamingos”, as her fans are known, can say hello.


A few very lucky flamingos will be able both to talk to Charlotte M. and take a photo with her by purchasing an exclusive voucher on the Leolandia website at


The event is being strongly supported by Leolandia through promotions on the park’s social media and Charlotte M.’s own channels. A landing page has been dedicated to the event on the park’s website, helping fans to find out more.


This is a big year for the young YouTuber. In July, filming of her first movie will begin, while Charlotte M. products, inspired by her enormously popular videos, books and songs, are already on the market and many are more on the way. Maurizio Distefano Licensing has already entered into a number of new licensing agreements with leading Italian companies that plan to launch Charlotte M.-branded products during 2022.


“We are delighted with this partnership with Leolandia,” says Maurizio Distefano, president of Maurizio Distefano Licensing. “At a time when Charlotte M.’s popularity is soaring we are sure her many fans will be thrilled to see her in person. With a movie on the way and a fast-growing licensing programme in progress, this is certain to be a big year for this major social media star.”


“For the summer season, Leolandia aims to further boost the park’s exciting daily schedule with special and exclusive content for families,” says David Tommaso, Leolandia’s Director of Marketing and Sales. “As well as rides, animated entertainment, shows and chances to see cartoon characters loved by the little ones, there will be a series of appearances by talented and successful young stars, such as the one scheduled on Saturday with Charlotte M., which is specially designed to ensure that all fans of the young YouTuber have a truly unforgettable experience. Because – as we love to say – in Leolandia all this is real!”

Bing celebrates storytelling

Acamar Films has been celebrating storytelling for World Book Day with Bing and all his fans in Italy. Bing stories portray authentic characters and relatable moments that help pre-schoolers to understand and recognise the multitude of emotions they experience each day. The campaign involved various online, retail and on-air collaborations to emphasize the importance of sharing stories with little ones as they grow.


In the week leading up to World Book Day on Saturday 23 April, Acamar Films partnered with the biggest father online community, Superpapà, to drive valuable content to its extensive social media network with special videos, articles and posts.


Three influencer fathers, part of Superpapà’s network, brought to life the popular Bing book, Bing – Festa per pupazziwith an entertaining family storytelling video. The videos show engaged and excited Bingfans as their fathers (and mothers and siblings!) read the story all together. The videos are now available to watch on each influencer’s social platforms and a special compilation read along video will premiere on Bing’s Italian Facebook page and Superpapa’s channels on Saturday 23 April.


In addition to this partnership, Acamar Films ended the week with a social media party on their Italian Bing Facebook page with games, activities and quizzes. Fans were asked to engage with questions such as, “What’s your Bingfans favourite Bing story” and “What are your favourite books to read together”.


Bing’s partners in Italy have also been celebrating World Book Day. Publishing partner, Giunti, has been carrying out a gift-with-purchase promotion from now until 13 May for their wide range of Bing books at all Giunti al Punto and LaFeltrinelli bookshops in Italy. Bing was also part of Rai Yoyo’s weeklong on-air and social media campaign culminating with a special World Book Day programming event on 23 April.


“Condividere storie… è una cosa da Bing!”

Animaccord reserves a brand-new look to Masha and the Bear to give fresh air to Consumer Products

For the first time since the founding of Masha and the Bear, Animaccord has conducted a large-scale rebranding, releasing a new Core Guide that presents huge renovations: a new logo looks more elegant and modern; new corporate colours offer greater print opportunities as well as updated corporate fonts and new décor encompass the best graphic trends.

Maurizio Distefano Licensing, agent for Masha and the Bear in Italy, is happy to share with all licensees and future partners the opportunity to refresh the upcoming collections of Consumer Products, proving that evergreen Masha and the Bear brand has become a “new classic” that never stops renewing itself.

In the main style guide, all licensees can now find new images and poses of the characters, high-quality backgrounds, new colour palettes, icons, patterns and graphic elements. To make the branding process easier there have been added fresh design solutions, stills from the latest episodes, new textures, updated vector graphics, along with new quotes from Masha.

Also, two new guides on packaging and point of sale have been developed with ready-made designs for different types of packaging that can be easily adapted to the desired height for a product and will be ready to print. In the POS guide, ready-made options for any budget can be found, to create impressive and immersive experiences in point of sales, to enchant more and more all Masha and the Bear little fans.

To demonstrate the variability of the use of the new branding and its elements, a catalogue of various products has been created. Be the first to discover the “new classics” of this rebrand!

Colourful Charlotte M. sneakers now at retail in Italy

Easy Shoes collaboration is part of a busy year for the web star


The respected licensing agency Maurizio Distefano Licensing, the worldwide licensing agent for the popular young web star Charlotte M., has announced that the Charlotte M. spring 2022 shoe collection has arrived.


Designed by Charlotte M. with her target generation Z audience very much in mind and produced by Italian footwear specialist Easy Shoes, these beautiful sneakers in four different colours (pink, white, black and blue jean) are available now in major shoe stores and retail chains across Italy. Not only that but every purchase includes a special gift: a pair of super-cool Charlotte M. cat-eyes sunglasses.


To support the launch of the sneakers, Charlotte M. herself has begun a campaign on her very popular social media outlets and is also the starring in the supporting TV commercial (which you can see on, to be aired on the main children’s channels.


Charlotte M. is a social media sensation, with, to date, over a million subscribers on YouTube and TikTok and nearly 150,000 followers on Instagram. Her creative talents extend to singing, writing, acting and more.


She’s the singer on four songs, “Best Friends”, “Hola Flamingo”, “I loove you” and “Buum Buum”, available on YouTube and streaming on Spotify. She’s also the author of three books published by Fabbri Editori. The first two “Un’estate al college infestato” (A Summer at a Haunted College) and “Un amore oltreoceano” (An Overseas Love) came out in 2020 and 2021. The latest “Charlotte M. La mia vita segreta”, (My Secret Life) published in February 2022, is a comic book adventure with a significant role for Charlotte M.’s favourite animal symbol, the flamingo.


Much more is planned for 2022, including a starring role in a new movie, a TV series and many more licensing launches.


Charlotte M. products, inspired by her enormously popular videos, are already on the market and many are more on the way. Maurizio Distefano Licensing has already entered into a number of new licensing agreements with leading Italian companies that plan to launch Charlotte M.-branded products during 2022.


The Charlotte M. story began at the age of eight when she started making videos in her room for fun and posting them on YouTube. YouTube viewers took notice, her videos became more polished and professional, and her audience grew.


Charlotte M. is especially popular among teenage girls, who love the humour and spontaneity with which she talks about her life and the topics that affect her life – and, of course, their lives: first crushes, friendship, arguments, going to school and how she fills her free time.


Massimo De Laurentis, President of Easy Shoes, comments: “Charlotte M. is fantastic! Our partnership with her and Maurizio Distefano Licensing has inspired us to produce some truly innovative and high-quality products for her fans and is all set to be a great success.”


Maurizio Distefano, President of MDL, says, “We are thrilled to be partnering with Easy Shoes for the Charlotte M. brand. Easy Shoes has captured the essence of the brand and Charlotte’s style with a collection that will blow all of her fans away!.”

Maurizio Distefano Licensing welcomes two new properties for the italian market

Charlie Chaplin and Albert Einstein and expands the agency’s celebrities category offer

Maurizio Distefano Licensing partners has been named agency of record for the Italian market by Greenlight for two iconic celebrities: Charlie Chaplin and Albert Einstein. These two icons are recognized worldwide as pioneers in their field, the first as a comedian and silent film star, the second as a physicist and revolutionary Nobel Prize winner.

Charlie Chaplin gave rise to one of the most emblematic characters in the cinematic production of his years: Charlot led the tramp figure to universal fame and was able to speak to his audience with elegant irreverence, highlighting with purity and simplicity the problems that society was facing in the first half of the 20th century.

His smart and sophisticated comedy is still a hit with audiences, in a collection of more than ninety films of which he was director,  actor, writer, and later music composer (“The Kid”, “The Gold Rush”,  “Modern Times”, “The Great Dictator”, and “Limelight” are just some of his most famous titles).

The iconographic elements linked to Charlie Chaplin are truly unique: his crumpled clothes, instantly recognizable bowler hat, his cane, his funny walk, and his unmistakable mustache have created an exclusive and characteristic image.

Albert Einstein, on the other hand, brought to light modern physics: his discoveries gave an unparalleled contribution to civilization today, through the development of revolutionary theories of electronics, astronomy and quantum mechanics, of which he was one of the founders.

His Theory of Relativity is one of the most important scientific revelations in the history of man and it determined his fame and notoriety. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in for the year 1921, in particular, for his discovery of the law of the photoelectric effect.

It goes without saying that in Einstein’s iconography in the world represents a symbol, rooted in human thought. In the collective imagination, the scientist figure refers to him: the genius represented with his disheveled hair that defies gravity and mustache.

These two celebrities offer a very rich styleguide full of iconic elements ready to be picked up by licensee companies and through which they can explore infinite possibilities of use of the property: from clothing to accessories, passing through stationery and costume jewelry, and finally home and living, giving space to creativity with truly unique products.

Maurizio Distefano, President of the agency, states: “We are thrilled to have welcomed such iconic and globally relevant celebrities into our portfolio: their uniqueness and the universally recognized images attached to them make us proud of the partnership with Greenlight, who boasts an unparalleled experience in global licensing deals. Being chosen as their Italian agents is, once more, a source of great encouragement, with projects that will certainly give space to further interesting collaborations.”

“Greenlight is proud to name the Maurizio Distefano Licensing the agency of record for the Italian market. We believe their connectivity and expertise in the industry will bring many licensing opportunities to our two beloved icons,” states Ryan Kernan, VP Greenlight.

Maurizio Distefano Licensing wins twice at Bologna Licensing Awards

LIFE collaborations with Clementoni and Benetton honoured in two major categories


Maurizio Distefano Licensing (MDL), which manages licensing for a number of major brands in the Italian market, has enjoyed success in two major categories at the 2022 Bologna Licensing Awards. Both wins recognise MDL’s work with LIFE – a brand inspired by one of the most the iconic names in 20th century photojournalism.


The partnership between educational toy company Clementoni and LIFE won Best Adult Licensing Project for a collection of licensed puzzles using LIFE imagery. The puzzles were praised for their distinctive design, which created strong branding on a challenging product type thanks to the highly effective use of iconic LIFE images.

Another MDL-inspired partnership – between global fashion brand Benetton and LIFE – won the Best Adult Fashion Project category for using LIFE magazine’s magnificent shots in a new collection of organic t-shirts and sweatshirts. Benetton’s collection impressed the jury both for the garment designs and for the effectiveness of the supporting campaign, which enjoyed strong coverage.

The awards ceremony took place in the evening of 21 March at Palazzo Re Enzo, in the heart of Bologna on day one of the 14th edition of the four-day Bologna Licensing Trade Fair 2022. The Bologna Licensing Awards are the only awards in the field of licensing in Italy and on this occasion assessed more than 130 projects from all over Europe.


The awards recognised the best licensing projects developed during 2020 and 2021 in preschool, kids, teen and adult markets, in categories that included retail, fashion, publishing, promotion and kiosk. There was also an award for best property of 2021.


Award-winning products and projects in the individual categories were on display for all visitors to the show in specially designed showcases.


The jury, all respected members of the licensing industry, included: Ivan Colecchia, Business Development Senior VicePresident at BrandTrends; Lisa Hryniewicz, Owner of Koko Rose Media, an expert in media, children’s IP development and strategic marketing for over 25 years; Helena Mansell-Stopher, Managing Director and Founder of Products of Change, an online hub for sustainability aimed at licensed consumer goods; Cecilia Padula , VP Kids & Family Brand South Europe, Middle East and Africa for Paramount Global, with extensive experience in television, media and entertainment; and Will Pearce, Managing Director of The Insights Family.


Since its first issue in November 1936, LIFE magazine has been the most respected source and collection of photojournalism in the world. Its photojournalists immortalized some of the most significant events of the 20th century from many fields including celebrity, history, fashion, sports, cinema and nature. There’s no doubt that its iconic images have withstood the test of time. This brand strength, along with the continuing relevance of its imagery, has driven a licensing campaign on which MDL has been working with partners in such categories as apparel, stationery, wall art, puzzles and homewares.


Maurizio Distefano says, “These awards are recognition both of the power of a unique brand and of the hard work done by the MDL team with Clementoni and Benetton in bringing LIFE imagery so effectively to such diverse product areas. We are thrilled to be honoured at Italy’s premier licensing awards.”

Maurizio Distefano Licensing tops Licence Global rankings

Maurizio Distefano Licensing ranked number one agency in Italy and number two in Europe


Maurizio Distefano Licensing, which manages licensing for a number of major brands in the Italian market, has been placed at the top of the License Global magazine agent rankings for 2022 in the Italian market.


The recently announced License Global rankings not only place Maurizio Distefano Licensing as the number one agency in Italy. Maurizio Distefano Licensing was also placed second in Europe and 37th worldwide.


Maurizio Distefano Licensing’s success is underlined by its ability to successfully manage a portfolio of properties across a wide variety of brand areas.


It has of course long enjoyed enormous success representing hit animated series like Bing, Bluey, ALVINNN!!! And the Chipmunks, Gigantosaurus and Masha and the Bear.


However, it has had a great response to its growing portfolio of fashion brands, like young Italian stylist Filippo Laterza and the PREMOLI + DI BELLA brand inspired by the work of creative directors Giovanni Premoli and Dario Di Bella.


Iconic cultural brands like LIFE, Asterix, ISA (International Space Archives) and La Gazzetta dello Sport are also managed by MDL in Italy as are some of the most famous bands and musical artists in history: Motorhead, Backstreet Boys, Whitney Huston, David Bowie, The Police, Pink Floyd, to name only a few. MDL also represents the incredibly successful teen influencer and content creator Charlotte M.


Reinforcing the strong reputation Maurizio Distefano Licensing enjoys, it has announced recent addition to its portfolio that include comic book legend Corto Maltese.


Maurizio Distefano says, “It’s been a tough twelve months for the licensing industry but with hard work and attention to detail we have not only continued offering a first-class service to our valuable existing clients but we have also enriched our portfolio with some popular and iconic names. We’re delighted that this hard work has allowed us to retain our place among Europe’s elite.”

Bing’s Italian success continues with new episodes on Rai YoYo

Acamar Films’ International Emmy Award-winning pre-school series Bing continues to go from strength to strength, thanks to a significant new deal signed with Italian free TV broadcast partner Rai.


Bing – currently rated currently #1 on the Rai YoYo app – has enjoyed huge commercial success in Italy following its launch in 2018. This new deal further strengthens the partnership between Acamar Films and Rai, with an extenstion of rights for Bing Series 1-3, and the acquisition of Series 4. Italian audiences will be treated to the latest 26 episodes before the end of this year.


As part of Acamar Films’ multiplatform distribution strategy, Italian episodes of Bing are also available to stream and download (along with a suite of learning games and activities) via the recently launched Bing app ‘Bing: Guarda, Gioca, Impara’, and via Bing’s Italian language YouTube channel – which currently generates an average of around 30 million views each month.


Bing will continue to be available via Italian VOD platform TIMVision (who are currently producing Bing’s first ever sign language version) and on DeA Junior where it is the #1 show on-air. Bing will make its Amazon Prime Video Italy debut in October.


Annalisa Liberi, Head of Acquisitions, Rai Ragazzi, said: “We are very happy Bing’s principal Italian home continues to be Rai Yoyo, the leading children’s TV channel in the country. Our kids truly love and enjoy Bing, easily sharing the feelings and emotions that are part of growing up.”


Eroulla Constantine, Director of Sales & Distribution, Acamar Films, said: “Our latest deal with Rai confirms that Bing is as strong as ever and becoming a truly global evergreen icon. Having recently won ‘Property of the Year’ for 2019 at the Bologna Licensing Awards we know that Bing is a firm favourite among pre-schoolers in Italy. We hope to continue to strengthen our relationship broadcasters and digital platforms with our presence at MIPCOM Online+ in October, and are eager to connect with new partners.”


Produced by Acamar Films and Dublin-based partners Brown Bag Films, award-winning Bing has seen extraordinary success since it launched in the UK in 2014 and has now been licensed to 130 territories. Constantly working to expand its international growth, Acamar’s Media Sales team are currently looking for opportunities in untapped areas including Latin America and key Asian countries.


Acamar Films will be at MIPCOM Online+. Search for “Acamar Films” or use this URL if you have an event account:

Masha and the Bear: guests of honour at leading Italian family attraction

Leolandia amusement park celebrates 45th birthday with stars of hit children’s show


Maurizio Distefano Licensing has announced that the stars of the preschool animation hit Masha and the Bear will be the guests of honour during this, the 45th birthday year of Leolandia, one of Italy’s most popular amusement parks.

A fun and exciting  programme of events is planned to celebrate the 45th birthday of the park, and Masha and her big friend Bear will play a large role. Admirers of the duo will be able to meet their heroes in person, be photographed with them and have fun in Leolandia, the amusement park of choice for most Italian families.

With its six themed areas and 39 attractions for all ages, including a rich entertainment offering and attractions like The World of Animals and a miniature Italy, Leolandia, is the largest theme park in the northwest of the country and the fastest growing in Italy. It’s no surprise therefore that Leolandia and the stars of Italy’s most popular preschool television series should join forces.

Masha and her friend take centre stage at Leolandia on the back of exceptional figures for their television series and record earnings  — € 4.34 million in just 19 days — for their movie Masha and the Bear: Friends Forever. A 26 episode spin-off series, Masha Tales, began this month on Rai YoYo and the touring Masha and the Bear Live Show is reaching audiences in all of Italy’s big cities.

With a target audience of children aged 3-9, Masha and the Bear has enjoyed strong TV ratings in Italy as well as on-demand streaming on YouTube, Chili and Infinity, and a very popular Facebook page. A new spin-off series, Masha Tales, a film and a live tour have also been popular and kept brand awareness high, further boosting a very successful licensing campaign managed in Italy by Maurizio Distefano Licensing. Masha and the Bear is already one of the top licensed properties on the Italian market. Recent licenses include beachware, bicycles, bicycle accessories, confectionery, markers, colouring sets, umbrellas, bed linen, clocks and watches.

Maurizio Distefano, President and Founder MDL, says: “I am delighted that an amusement park that is such a favourite for Italian families has welcomed two of the most popular children’s characters to its birthday celebrations. This agreement underlines the success of the characters produced by Animaccord and the enormous awareness of Masha and The Bear that underpins a massively successful licensing campaign. I’m sure that we’ll be hearing much, much more from Masha and the Bear throughout 2016 and beyond.”