Mr Benn has buzz

Factory Rights’ classic character teams for Bee In The City art trail in Manchester, UK

Written by Rhys Thomas

Posted 13.09.2018 | Events

Mr Benn has buzz thumbnail

Altrincham-based animation studio and rights owner Factory acquired distribution and licensing rights to the much-loved property Mr Benn back in August 2017. A year on, it’s been a magical 12 months for this classic, colourful brand.

Mr Benn is currently part of the Bee In The City public art trail in Manchester, with his very own bee getting crowds swarming. A TV advertising and 360 marketing campaign created by The Chase for The Insurance Emporium featuring the character has been shortlisted for The Best Licensed Marketing Communications Award, and Mr Benn will appear as part of the V&A Museum of Childhood’s ‘A Pirate’s Life For Me’ exhibition opening in October. 

The Mr Benn Bee was created in July as part of the hugely successful Bee in the City public art trail. It is positioned outside Manchester’s National Football Museum, a worldwide tourist hotspot, where it can be seen until 23rd September. The Mr Benn bee continues to be in the top 10 most unlocked within the Bee In The City app, with over 10,299 unlocks to date.

The show-stopping Mr Benn Bee, was designed in-house by the team at Factory, and joined the giant colony for one of the biggest public art exhibitions the city of Manchester has ever seen. Factory came on board as a sponsor for Bee in the City earlier this year, and the team has worked collaboratively with leading global art trail producer, Wild in Art, to bring the much-loved Mr Benn to life as a Bee.

Mr Benn has also been licensed by The Insurance Emporium, to be the front of their TV adverts and across their marketing and social platforms - helping to highlight why you might need insurance whilst on life’s adventures. The Insurance Emporium also held several activations including at Waterloo Train Station and Manchester Arndale Shopping centre.

The Insurance Emporium’s ‘If You Love It, Keep It In The Emporium’ Mr Benn marketing and advertising campaign has been shortlisted for The Best Licensed Marketing Communications Award at the prestigious UK Licensing Awards 2018.

In October, Mr Benn will also appear at the world-famous V&A Museum of Childhood, as part of their ‘A Pirate’s Life For Me’ exhibition, which charts the influence of fictional pirates on children and children’s culture in an immersive experience made up of all things pirate! The exhibition is free to all, running from 20th October 2018 to 22nd April 2019, and will then tour across the UK for a further two years.

Anya Hollis, Head of Brand Licensing at Factory Rights comments: “We’ve had a great year with Mr Benn, the last 12 months have really demonstrated the continued affection and love for Mr Benn 50 years on from when the first book was published.”

“And it’s very exciting times for Factory Rights, the new licensing arm of Factory. Not only have we had great success with Mr Benn but also huge interest for Off The Leash which has over 942,000 Facebook followers and over 13 million views of our first video.”

In addition to Mr Benn, Factory Rights manages the rights to a number of other properties and art created by David McKee including King Rollo, Victor & Maria, and Watt The Devil; also Towser and Dr Xargle with Tony Ross and the particularly strong Rupert Fawcett cartoons, including Off The Leash, On The Prowl, Fred and Daddy.

Factory acquired the long-established Rollo Rights catalogue in a move that further underpins its ambition to develop a rights ownership arm that supports its studio production business and with an experienced Factory Rights team is managing and building this new division.

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