Alfred R. Kahn, chairman and CEO of 4Kids Ent. Inc., was inducted into the International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association (LIMA) Murray Altchuler Licensing Hall of Fame during a ceremony on Wednesday night. Kahn has been a driving force behind the growth of such properties as The Cabbage Patch Kids, Pokémon, The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Yu-Gi-Oh!.
"During the course of his three-decade career in licensing, Al has stood out as a pioneer in identifying trends in popular culture and adapting them to a global audience," says LIMA president Charles Riotto. "His unique insight has translated into much success, not just for his company, but the licensing industry as a whole."
Kahn comments, "It is a privilege to be associated with the same people whose work I have admired for years. I am proud of my long-time association with LIMA, and look forward to a successful partnership for many more years to come."
4Kids had several properties nominated for International Licensing Excellence Awards. The Cabbage Patch Kids dolls were up for Best Character Brand Licensee of the Year–Hard Goods (with Play Along Inc); Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (with Mirage Licensing Inc.) for Best Film & Television Brand License of the Year and Overall Best License of the Year; Yu-Gi-Oh! for Best Film & Television Brand License of the Year and Overall Best License of the Year; and Artlist Collection: The Dog (with Artlist International) for Best Promotion of the Year.
The International Licensing Excellence awards ceremony took place Wednesday night and saw Spider-Man take overall license of 2004 and best promotion. Meanwhile, Dora the Explorer was named film and television brand license of the year, and Target was dubbed retailer of the year for success with the SpongeBob SquarePants brand.