Angry Birds maker signs deal with Lego
Finland's Rovio said on Monday it had signed a deal with Danish toymaker Lego to launch a line of Angry Birds building blocks as a bid to revive its ailing licensing business based on the popular mobile game.
Rovio, whose 2014 earnings fell 73pc due to a drop in licensing the Angry Birds brand on toys, clothing and sweets, said the release of the Lego toys would coincide with the premiere of its full-length Angry Birds movie in spring 2016.
The Angry Birds game, in which players use a slingshot to attack pigs who steal birds' eggs, is the No. 1 paid for mobile app of all time, but after initially sweeping the world the brand has been losing appeal and Rovio has struggled to produce new hit games.
The company is hoping an upcoming 3D movie will help the toy business turn back to growth.
Rovio recently cut about 110 jobs, or 14pc of its workforce.
The company's sales fell last year to €158m, compared to €173.5m a year earlier.
Operating profits of €10m last year were less than a third of the 2013 levels.
Figures for 2014 show that pure gaming revenue rose last year, but sales of merchanising and other non game income fell.
A tie-in with Lego is aimed at reversing that.