BRATZ Maker Named Entrepreneur of the Year

MGA Ent.’s BRATZ line of fashion dolls for girls burst onto the scene in 2001, giving Barbie a run for her money and sparking the interest of Twentieth Century Fox, which plans to produce a live-action/animated feature based on the girls lifestyle brand. Now MGA founder and CEO Isaac Larian has been named Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year (Consumer Products). The title was bestowed at the 18th annual awards gala held on Tuesday, June 29th in Beverly Hills, Calif.

Ernst & Young’s Tony Radaich comments, "The story of a young man coming to the U.S., working hard and creating a very successful company was very impressive to the independent judging panel.”

Upon receiving the award, Larian commented, "I dedicate this and all industry recognitions and award wins this year to the 475 passionate and hard working employees of MGA worldwide who really make the dream come true.”

The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards program will expand on November 18-21 in Palm Springs, Calif., when Entrepreneur of the Year award winners from around the world are honored. That Saturday evening awards gala will see the 2004 United States National Entrepreneur of the Year finalists and winners announced in various categories.

The BRATZ brand has been named Family Fun magazine’s Toy of the Year Award three years in a row and was recently awarded LIMA’s top prize for the Overall Best License of the Year. Early this fall, MGA Ent. will introduce its first boy’s toy property, Alien Racers.

Following the lead of Miramax and its BIONICLE franchise, Twentieth Century Fox will first release a direct-to-video BRATZ adventure before taking the property to the big screen. The home video title, Bratz–Starrin’ & Stylin’, produced by MGA’s new film division, MGA Ent. Films, is slated for release on DVD and VHS on August 3. The unit also plans to produce movies based on Alien Racers and other properties.