Hodder Children’s Books and Maximum Licensing are hoping to take the Oi! picture book series into stage promotions and licensing after acquiring new rights from the illustrator’s agent and the author.
The Oi! series is by author Kes Gray and illustrator Jim Field and comprises of Oi Frog!, which was nominated for the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2012, Oi Dog!, which was shortlisted for both the Sainsbury’s Children’s Book Award 2016 and Children’s Book of the Year at The British Book Awards, and Oi Cat!, which is in the running for this year’s Children’s Book of the Year at The British Book Awards.
Hodder, part of the Hachette Children’s Group (HCG), has acquired stage and partnership rights to the brand from Gray and Field’s agent, Jodie Hodges at United Agents, whilst Maximum Licensing, the retail-led brand licensing consultancy owned by Sarah Fletcher, has bought licensing rights in a deal with Gray and Hodges.
Maximum and HCG will work together to grow the brand in all major licensing categories with a focus on toys, clothing and stationery for children aged 2-6.
Katie Price, licensing director at HCG, said: “We are extremely excited to be expanding Kes Gray and Jim Field’s bestselling series into potential stage shows and other partnerships – we have always seen the brand as a multi-platform experience. We are also delighted to be working alongside Maximum Licensing on expanding the books into other licensing categories. The Oi books have become must-haves for any home and are fast becoming modern classics, and we are sure that these brand extensions will be a hit too.”