Readerlink Distribution Services has acquired the Dreamtivity brand and assets from Retail Centric Marketing, which is based in Franklin, Tenn. Dreamtivity will become an imprint of Readerlink’s San Diego-based publishing arm, Printers Row Publishing Group, and will continue to operate from its current location with its existing team, including cofounders Chad Wiggins and Beth Peters.
Simon Tasker, executive v-p, general manager, and group publisher of Printers Row, said Dreamtivity’s coloring and activity books, arts and crafts products, and strength in the value channel fill gaps in Printers Row’s list and knowledge base. “We’re hiring their expertise,” he said. “We love what they’re doing, and we can add our resources to help them leverage their business even more.”
Licensing is one area where both Tasker and Peters see opportunities for synergies. Both Dreamtivity and Printers Row, especially under its Studio Fun imprint, have strong licensing programs. They work with some of the same licensors, including Disney, Nickelodeon, and Mattel. Dreamtivity also brings new licenses to Printers Row, notably Crayola, for which it makes sun catchers, canvas art, and art kits. With the Crayola brand, Tasker said, “they have the ability to expand outside the book department and get product throughout the store.”
Dreamtivity’s price points, distribution, and formats complement those of Printers Row, which specializes in higher-end formats such as book-plus, collections, and sets sold through mass and club channels. This will enable the combined company to work with their common licensors on broader programs. “We’ll be able to make a bigger impact by publishing across more formats and having a whole program at retail,” Peters says.
Both companies have developed proprietary content that could be shared. “They can take our content, break it down, and put it in the value channel, and we can take theirs and bring it into the clubs,” Tasker explained.
“This makes so much sense from a synergistic standpoint,” Peters said. “We’ll be able to really strengthen our distribution as well as grow our licensed business.” Readerlink’s distribution arm services nearly 100,000 retail locations across the U.S.