Archie Comics and Genius Brands International Partner With Marc Ecko to Create a 75th Anniversary Capsule

BEVERLY HILLS, CA -- (Marketwired) -- Dec 15, 2014 -- As the appointed licensing agency for leading publisher and property owner Archie Comics, Genius Brands International, Inc. "GBI" (OTCQB: GNUS), and its wholly owned subsidiary A Squared Entertainment, are currently building a broad consumer products' program for Archie, the #1 best-selling kids' magazine at retail today, to coincide with the brand's 75th anniversary.

Marc Eckō, the designer and purveyor of pop culture, has signed on to design an exclusive capsule of Archie themed apparel for men, under the Marc Eckō Cut & Sew brand. First becoming a recognized name in street culture in the early 1990s, Marc Eckō's clothing lines have generated billions of dollars globally since that time. After a 5 year departure, fall 2014 marked the return of Marc Eckō as the Operator and Lead Designer of his eponymous label, Marc Eckō Cut & Sew.

GBI will represent additional pop culture characters from Archie Comics, including Jughead, Betty & Veronica, Josie & The Pussycats, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Afterlife With Archie, The Fox, The New Crusaders, The Shield, Li'l Jinx and many more.

"We are supremely excited to partner with Marc Eckō to create this new line of apparel," said Jon Goldwater, Archie Comics Publisher/CEO. "This is just the beginning of a daring and wide-ranging licensing campaign that will help widen our brand's reach in time for the celebration of our momentous 75th anniversary."

"Archie Comics is the longest running multigenerational brand in history, having sold 2 billion comics worldwide published in a number of languages, plus Archie characters have been featured prominently in animation, television, film and music," commented Stone Newman, President, Global Consumer Products, GBI. "With Archie Comics celebrating their 75th Anniversary in fourth quarter 2015, it is optimal timing to partner with leading designer Marc Eckō to reimagine an Archie Comics capsule of men's apparel influenced by street culture. With Marc Eckō on board and leading the way, we anticipate a whole roster of new partners to join us to celebrate this incredible milestone with development of a whole range of products to reach fans of all ages."

"I love the playfulness of the characters ...and the aesthetic of its universe. It's an amazing palette to play with -- and the folks at the company want to do entrepreneurial things. That combo of nostalgia and being daring with their IP and inviting creators on to the platform makes their future very bright," stated Marc Eckō.

Archie is an iconic American brand with widespread appeal experiencing a resurgence of readership and fan interest. The constantly evolving high-school situational comedy has a broad range of appeal. Archie Comics is currently in development on both animated and live-action television shows for Archie, and over 12 million apps have been downloaded to date. Afterlife with Archie became the fastest-selling Archie Comic in Archie history and broadened the demand of the brand to entirely new fans while continuing to engage existing fans.

Betty and Veronica comics debuted in 1960 and are still relevant today with the ever stylish duo featured in fall 2013 on products for M.A.C. Cosmetics and British shoe brand Charlotte Olympia, with both company's inventory quickly selling out.

Sabrina Spellman became a sensation with her own comic series in 1971, and hit TV sitcom running from 1996 to 2003 starring Melissa Joan Hart, which quickly gave rise to Sabrina: The Animated Series. An all-new comic book series will launch in Fall 2014, and a new live-action feature is in development for 2016.

About Archie Comics:
Archie Comics is the leading mass market comic book publisher in the world and the home to a wide array of the most popular humor, action-adventure and superhero characters in entertainment, including Archie, Jughead, Betty and Veronica, Reggie, Kevin Keller, Josie and the Pussycats, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Afterlife With Archie, the Dark Circle Comics superhero characters (The Black Hood, The Fox, The Shield and more), Li'l Jinx and many more. Archie Comics have sold over 2 billion comics worldwide and are published around the world in a number of languages. In addition to comics, Archie characters have been featured prominently in animation, television, film and music.

About A Squared Entertainment:
A Squared Entertainment, a wholly owned subsidiary of Genius Brands International, is a brand management and licensing company that represents third party properties across a broad range of categories in territories around the world. The company currently represents Psycho Bunny, a luxury apparel line; From Frank, a humor greeting card and product line; Elecktro Kids and MIP, both from Wowee Toys; Celessence Technologies, the world's leading microencapsulation company; and Archie Comics, celebrating its 75th Anniversary as one of the most successful and beloved comic book brands of all time.

Headquartered in Beverly Hills, California, Genius Brands International "GBI" (OTCQB: GNUS) is a publicly traded global brand management company that creates multimedia content for toddlers to tweens. Led by award-winning creators and producers CEO Andy Heyward and President Amy Moynihan Heyward, GBI creates "content with a purpose," meaning content that is as entertaining as it is enriching. GBI's growing library of content includes the award-winning Baby Genius, Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club, Thomas Edison's Secret Lab and Stan Lee's Mighty 7, the first project from Stan Lee Comics, a joint venture with legendary Stan Lee's POW! Entertainment. For more information, please visit

About Iconix Brand Group, Inc.:
Iconix Brand Group, Inc. owns, licenses and markets a growing portfolio of consumer brands including: CANDIE'S ®, BONGO ®, BADGLEY MISCHKA ®, JOE BOXER ®, RAMPAGE ®, MUDD ®, MOSSIMO ®, LONDON FOG ®, OCEAN PACIFIC ®, DANSKIN ®, ROCAWEAR ®, CANNON ®, ROYAL VELVET ®, FIELDCREST ®, CHARISMA ®, STARTER ®, WAVERLY ®, ZOO YORK ®, SHARPER IMAGE ®, ECKŌ UNLTD. ®, MARC ECKŌ ®, UMBRO ® and LEE COOPER ®. In addition, Iconix owns interests in the ED HARDY ®, ARTFUL DODGER ®, MATERIAL GIRL ®, PEANUTS ®, TRUTH OR DARE ®, BILLIONAIRE BOYS CLUB ®, ICE CREAM ®, MODERN AMUSEMENT ®, and BUFFALO ® brands. The Company licenses its brands to a network of leading retailers and manufacturers that touch every major segment of retail distribution from the luxury market to the mass market in both the U.S. and worldwide. Through its in-house business development, merchandising, advertising and public relations departments Iconix manages its brands to drive greater consumer awareness and equity.

About Unlabel.ME:
Founded by Marc Eckō and Marci Tapper, Unlabel.ME is the exclusive Iconix Brand Group licensee of the Marc Eckō Cut & Sew brand. Unlabel.Me is a centralized design, production and fulfillment engine for consumer fashion products. With world class partners in manufacturing, marketing and design, UNLABEL.ME breaks down the massive inefficiencies that hamstring the development and distribution of fashion brands by deploying a unique set of e-commerce, manufacturing and crowd collaboration tools.

Three.Sixty Marketing + Communications (For GBI PR)
Michelle Orsi/Carol Holdsworth
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PLR Investor Relations (For GBI Investor Relations)
Michael Porter

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Archie Comics:
Alex Segura
Senior Vice President, Publicity and Marketing

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914.381.5155, ext. 226

Iconix Brand Group:
Jaime Sheinheit (For Iconix Investors Relations)

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Maria Dolgetta (For Iconix Public Relations

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Rachelle Louis 

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