Iconic Cartoon Character Betty Boop to Become United Football League Fantasy Cheerleader

The United Football League is partnering with King Features Syndicate in a unique, co-branded licensing program that will result in the iconic Betty Boop character becoming the ‘Official Fantasy Cheerleader of the UFL.’

A true American sweetheart, Betty Boop, will be featured on United Football League team-specific merchandise and a mascot-style walk-around character will bring the fantasy cheerleader to life at games and events throughout the 2010 fall season and beyond.

Betty Boop was introduced to UFL fans in the home city of the UFL reigning champion Las Vegas Locos on Wednesday as part of a league-wide uniform unveiling at the city’s Fashion Show Mall.

First introduced in the 1930s, Betty Boop was created by Max Fleischer for his “Talkartoons” series, the first “talkies” of animation, which Max’s company, Fleischer Studios, produced for Paramount. Today, the world-famous cartoon character is one of the most popular and successfully licensed characters in entertainment history, with more than 185 licensees in the United States and approximately 375 internationally producing quality products bearing Betty’s likeness in virtually every category.

“King Features has a long and impressive track record for building brands,” said Bill Uglow, the United Football League’s Senior Vice President of Consumer Products and Licensing. “We look forward to the new opportunities their expertise in strategic licensing will bring to the UFL. We believe that our teams’ fans of all ages will enjoy the line of Betty Boop merchandise and will have fun welcoming her to UFL stadiums at many of our games.”

The first licensee on board to develop UFL / Betty Boop co-branded products is Trevco Sportswear, which will launch team T-shirts this Fall at retailers in UFL markets and at local stadiums.

“This co-branded partnership marries two American icons – football and Betty Boop – into a unique product that will have fans cheering,” said David Golzman, Licensing Manager of King Features. “We are thrilled to extend Betty’s presence with the UFL through this sportswear deal with Trevco and look forward to further expanding the UFL brand in the licensing arena.”

According to Jim George, CEO of Trevco Sportswear, the company will begin with junior tees and will be marketing them in UFL cities to the arenas and local businesses as well as interested retailers. Betty’s image, coupled with the UFL and individual team logos, and her presence at games will bring another level of excitement to the in-stadium experience.

Partnering with the UFL moves Betty Boop into a sports category, which is one of the few areas of licensing in which she is not prominent and helps the UFL explode into pop culture. The popular cartoon character’s merchandise has become a desirable collection item for the female audience from babies to grandmothers, spanning multiple generations.

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