Collectable Figures From Smash Hit Animated Series To Be Offered In Key Latin American Territories
San Francisco, CA, March 19, 2010 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), one of the entertainment industry’s most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, announced that it has teamed with McDonald’s® to launch a special NARUTO Happy Meal® in Latin America. McDonald's is the leading global foodservice retailer. VIZ Media is the licensor for the NARUTO brand in North and South America.
In February, Mexico became the first country in Latin America to offer collectable figures for Naruto, Sasuke, Rock Lee and Gaara, who are featured main characters in the massively popular animated and manga graphic novel series. In March, McDonald’s locations in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama will begin offering the NARUTO Happy Meals. By April, restaurants in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela will also offer the NARUTO premiums.
“We’re extremely excited to feature NARUTO with the Happy Meal brand as we feel that it speaks to the new generation of McDonald’s customers,” says Gonzalo Ferreyra, Vice President Sales, VIZ Media. “Happy Meals are enjoyed by millions around the world everyday and to launch this campaign with such a staple in the lives of so many families means a lot to the NARUTO franchise. The popularity of the animated series has exploded throughout Latin America, where it is seen in more than 16 territories, and we’re sure McDonald’s customers will look forward to collecting these fun premiums!”
Created by Masashi Kishimoto, NARUTO was first introduced in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in Japan in 1999 and quickly became that country’s most popular ninja manga targeting tweens and teens and has sold more than 85 million copies to date. The manga series (rated ‘T’ for Teens) and animated counterpart (rated ‘T’ for teens), is among VIZ Media’s most successful properties.
The storylines of both the NARUTO manga and animated series/features depict the adventures of a young boy named Naruto Uzumaki who trains to become a ninja. Naruto, cursed with the spirit of the nine-tailed fox demon sealed within his body, is bullied and discriminated against by his fellow villagers. But Naruto is resilient and undaunted and his determination often inspires those around him. Through the adventures, the young ninja learns the importance of friendship, teamwork, loyalty, hard work, creativity, ingenuity, and right vs. wrong.
For more information on NARUTO, please visit the official NARUTO website at www.Naruto.com.
About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga (graphic novel) publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan’s largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa and is a global ex-Asia licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including the popular monthly manga anthology SHONEN JUMP magazine, graphic novels, and DVDs, and develops, markets, licenses, and distributes animated entertainment for audiences and consumers of all ages. Contact VIZ Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and website at www.VIZ.com.
About Arcos Dorados
Arcos Dorados is the largest restaurant operator in Latin America and the largest franchisee of the McDonald’s brand in the world. Arcos Dorados is a Latin American company and operates more than 1,750 McDonald’s restaurants, 1,200 dessert centers and 200 McCafé units in 19 countries (Argentina, Aruba, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curacao, Ecuador, Guadeloupe, French Guyana, Martinique, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Puerto Rico, Saint Thomas, Saint Croix, Uruguay y Venezuela) and delivers field service to the other ten markets in the region. It has more than 100 thousand employees who serve some 3.5 million clients per day. More than just one of the major employers in the region, Arcos Dorados is recognized as one of the best companies to work for and one of the prime employers of young people in their first jobs. Arcos Dorados also owns Axis, the logistics company present in Argentina, Chile, Venezuela y Mexico, with 500 employees and 150 clients.
McDonald's is the leading global foodservice retailer with more than 31,000 local restaurants in more than 100 countries. More than 75 percent of McDonald's restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by franchisees and affiliates.
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