JAKKS Pacific and NantWorks Take Play to New Heights with DreamPlay™ Toys Joint Venture
LOS ANGELES & MALIBU, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Oct. 1, 2012– Leading toy manufacturer JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (Nasdaq:JAKK) and technology innovator NantWorks LLC, entered into definitive agreements to create a joint venture company, “DreamPlay Toys LLC” to develop, market and sell toys and consumer products incorporating NantWorks’ proprietary iD (iDream) image recognition technology.
This novel technology enables the consumer to create magic in the real world – using a smart phone or tablet device – to instantly link the physical toy to video content, animation and interactive game play. With the NantWorks’ downloaded iD Browser app, a consumer simply points to the DreamPlay toy or image to activate content on a smart phone or tablet device screen, instantaneously bringing the toy to life. JAKKS Pacific plans to introduce a broad product line, which will combine this revolutionary technology with exciting new content, leaving consumers with a memorable and entertaining experience.
“Our recognition platform of the physical world accurately identifies countless images and features with the capability to differentiate between millions of objects instantaneously,” said Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, NantWorks’ founder and developer of the iD Browser. “Through the iD app the user’s device will now be able to see, hear, recognize and capture every sensory input around them. This will give them the ability to interact with the physical world around them as they work, live and play. This power of recognition on our single app will revolutionize and change the way children interact and play on a smartphone or tablet. The iD Browser app on a device now brings together like never before, sound, print or digital images, 3D objects and live video, creating endless possibilities for families to interact with our DreamPlay toys and products. With this, we can now launch an entire new generation of interactive toys.”
The new line of toy products is expected to be introduced at next month’s Los Angeles Toy Fair and at the Consumers Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January 2013. JAKKS Pacific will be responsible for the development, marketing, sales and distribution of toy products using NantWorks’ iD (iDream) image recognition platform.
“Through our partnership with NantWorks and its founder Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, we are aiming to expand into a consumer products technology company and take play to new heights by using recognition and augmented reality technologies to create a rich interactivity never before experienced,” said Stephen Berman, President and CEO, JAKKS Pacific, Inc. “Children will now be able to bring their toys to life and interact as never before with their favorite characters and physical objects, melding the real and virtual worlds through interaction with live animation, videos, digital photos and other content. More and more we are seeing a shift in children’s play patterns and JAKKS is committed to becoming a leader in bringing new experiences through technology to our customers.”
Berman added, “We are excited with the countless new opportunities that will present themselves with this ground-breaking partnership that we expect to be truly transformative to children of all ages as well as their parents. This partnership will enable JAKKS to become a leader in consumer products technologies and should present exciting opportunities with new and current licensing partners and retailers, who have already expressed great interest and enthusiasm in joining JAKKS and NantWorks in this new direction.”
Under the definitive agreements JAKKS Pacific is granted exclusive rights to use the ID technology with its toy products and to arrange for the grant of rights to other toy companies to use the ID technology. JAKKS Pacific and NantWorks have also formed DreamPlay LLC, which will extend image recognition technology to non-toy consumer products and applications, and pursuant to their agreements, JAKKS Pacific will be providing the services of its CEO, Stephen Berman, to act as General Manager of DreamPlay LLC, and other resources, including other personnel and facilities, for DreamPlay LLC’s business.
About JAKKS Pacific, Inc.
JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAKK) is a leading designer and marketer of toys and consumer products with a wide range of products that feature popular brands and children’s toy licenses. JAKKS’ diverse portfolio includes Action Figures, Electronics, Dolls, Dress-Up, Role Play, Halloween Costumes, Kids Furniture, Vehicles, Plush, Art Activity Kits, Seasonal Products, Infant/Pre-School, Construction Toys, Ride-On Vehicles, Wagons, Inflatable Environments and Tents, Impulse Toys and Pet Products sold under various proprietary brands including JAKKS Pacific®, Creative Designs International™, Road Champs®, Funnoodle®, JAKKS Pets™, Plug It In & Play TV Games™, Kids Only!™, Tollytots®, Disguise®, Moose Mountain® and Maui Toys®. JAKKS is also the creator of the underlying Monsuno™ property and toy line. JAKKS is an award-winning licensee of several hundred nationally and internationally known trademarks including Nickelodeon®, Warner Bros.®, Ultimate Fighting Championship®, Hello Kitty®, Graco®, Cabbage Patch Kids® and Pokémon®. www.jakks.com
© 2012 JAKKS Pacific, Inc. All rights reserved.
About NantWorks, LLC
Building the world the way da Vinci saw it… changing how we interact with the world and with each other … and how we work, live and play.
NantWorks LLC was founded by Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD. Its mission is to converge semiconductor technology, supercomputing, advanced networks and augmented intelligence to transform how we work, live and play. Early applications have been in the fields including scientific research and healthcare. For more information, see www.nantworks.com.
The NantWorks recognition platform comprises several state of the art and proprietary image, object, music and voice recognition technologies.
NantWorks iD Browser was released in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store and is now available for download.
This press release may contain forward-looking statements (within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) that are based on current expectations, estimates and projections about JAKKS Pacific’s business based partly on assumptions made by its management. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed or forecasted in such statements due to numerous factors, including, but not limited to, those described above, changes in demand for JAKKS’ products, product mix, the timing of customer orders and deliveries, the impact of competitive products and pricing, and difficulties with integrating acquired businesses. The forward-looking statements contained herein speak only as of the date on which they are made, and JAKKS undertakes no obligation to update any of them to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.
Source: JAKKS Pacific, Inc. & NantWorks LLC
JAKKS Pacific, Inc
Anne-Marie Feliciano, 310-455-6245
Jen Hodson, 310-405-7539