5th November 2007
WWE® SmackDown® vs. Raw® 2008 Kicks off Global Marketing Campaign on WWE® Monday Night RAW®
Multi-million Dollar Effort for Pre-eminent Fighting Video Game Franchise Supports Upcoming Simultaneous Release on Seven Platforms
AGOURA HILLS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--THQ Inc. (NASDAQ:THQI) and JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (NASDAQ:JAKK) today announced that the WWE® SmackDown® vs. Raw® 2008 global marketing campaign, aimed at highlighting the franchise’s debut on the WiiTM home video game system, the Nintendo DS™ and the PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system, will kick off tonight on Monday Night RAW®. The campaign is a multifaceted, multi-million dollar global marketing effort to support the biggest SmackDown vs. Raw launch in the franchise’s nine year history. WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008 is scheduled for simultaneous release on the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, PLAYSTATION 3 system, PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system, the Wii and Nintendo DS, plus wireless devices, on November 9, 2007 across Europe, Australia and New Zealand; and on November 13, 2007 across North America.
“The exciting and frenetic atmosphere of Monday Night RAW provides the perfect stage from which to launch our WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008 global marketing campaign,” said Bob Aniello, senior vice president, worldwide marketing, THQ. “This comprehensive worldwide effort will show fans how their love of wrestling can find intense new outlets through this year’s SmackDown vs. Raw debut on Wii, Nintendo DS and the PLAYSTATION 3 system. Each platform provides unique fighting experiences that will bring fans closer than ever to their favorite Superstars.”
“The WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008 global marketing campaign is the most comprehensive effort to date for the SmackDown vs. Raw franchise,” said Nelo Lucich, vice president of interactive, JAKKS Pacific. “We are excited by the unique game play delivered across an impressive seven systems and look forward to the upcoming launch of this year’s game.”
The cross platform marketing strategy for WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008 also includes:
A global TV campaign in eight different countries, including advertising, broadcast and event sponsorships.
Print advertising in consumer publications and holiday buyer guides, including a Nintendo-specific campaign.
A comprehensive online campaign including advertising, a demo campaign via Xbox Live® Marketplace for the Xbox 360, as well as the annual roster reveal and daily Superstar profiles campaign on IGN.
A worldwide gaming tournament where top SmackDown vs. Raw gamers will win the opportunity to compete at the 6th Annual THQ Superstar Challenge in Orlando, FL, which kicks off WrestleMania® 24 weekend
First-ever launch event for the franchise at Toys”R”Us Times Square, including an appearance and autograph signing by WWE Superstar Rey Mysterio®
Retailer-specific promotions including Superstar appearances, exclusive gift with purchase opportunities, co-marketing with WWE DVD and more
Wireless promotions through major carriers
More information about WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008 can be found at www.smackdownvsraw.com and www.thq.com.
About World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.
World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. is an integrated media and entertainment company headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, Toronto and London. Additional information on the company can be found at wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com. Information on television ratings and community activities can be found at parents.wwe.com.
About THQ Inc.
THQ Inc. (NASDAQ: THQI) is a leading worldwide developer and publisher of interactive entertainment software. The company develops its products for all popular game systems, personal computers and wireless devices. Headquartered in Los Angeles County, California, THQ sells product through its global network of offices located throughout North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. More information about THQ and its products may be found at www.thq.com and www.thqwireless.com. THQ, THQ Wireless and their respective logos are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of THQ Inc.
About JAKKS Pacific, Inc.
JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAKK) is a multi-brand company that designs and markets a broad range of toys and consumer products. The product categories include: Action Figures, Art Activity Kits, Stationery, Writing Instruments, Performance Kites, Water Toys, Sports Activity Toys, Vehicles, Infant/Pre-School, Plush, Construction Toys, Electronics, Dolls, Dress-Up, Role Play, and Pet Toys and Accessories. The products are sold under various brand names including JAKKS Pacific®, Play Along®, Flying Colors®, Creative Designs International™, Road Champs®, Child Guidance®, Pentech®, Trendmasters®, Toymax®, Funnoodle®, Go Fly a Kite®, Color Workshop®, JAKKS Pets™ and Plug It In & Play TV Games™. JAKKS and THQ Inc. participate in a joint venture that has worldwide rights to publish and market World Wrestling Entertainment video games. For further information, visit www.jakks.com.
Trademarks: All World Wrestling Entertainment programming, talent names, images, likenesses, slogans, wrestling moves, and logos are the exclusive property of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. ECW is a trademark owned by WWE Libraries, Inc. ECW is a trademark owned by WWE Libraries, Inc. All other trademarks, logos and copyrights are the property of their respective owners.
Microsoft, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox Live, the Xbox logos, and the Xbox Live logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries.
"PlayStation", "PS" Family logo and "PSP" are registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Memory Stick Duo™ may be required (sold separately).
Wii and Nintendo DS are trademarks of Nintendo.
The statements contained in this press release that are not historical facts may be “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections about the business of THQ Inc. and its subsidiaries (collectively referred to as “THQ”), including, but not limited to, expectations and projections related to the marketing campaign for WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008, and are based upon management’s current beliefs and certain assumptions made by management. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, business, competitive, economic, legal, political and technological factors affecting our industry, operations, markets, products or pricing. Readers should carefully review the risk factors and the information that could materially affect THQ’s financial results, described in other documents that THQ files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal period ended March 31, 2007, and particularly the discussion of risk factors set forth therein. Unless otherwise required by law, THQ disclaims any obligation to update its view on any such risks or uncertainties or to revise or publicly release the results of any revision to these forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release.
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.
THQ/Media RelationsJaime Jensen, 818-871-5111
THQ/Investor RelationsJulie MacMedan, 818-871-5125orJAKKS Pacific/Media RelationsGenna Rosenberg, 310-455-6235
World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.Kevin Hennessy, 203-352-8657