Upper Deck has announced that it has signed a multi-year deal with Nickelodeon for trading cards and trading card games based on Nickelodeon properties, including SpongeBob Squarepants, Jimmy Neutron, Fairly Odd Parents, and Rocket Power. The first product will be a SpongeBob Squarepants Trading Card Game, due in March 2003. A trading card product based on multiple properties, Nicktoons Trading Cards, will also be released in 2003.
The Nickelodeon properties are ratings powerhouses, with SpongeBob among the most-watched show on cable, and newer shows like Fairly Odd Parents and Jimmy Neutron rising rapidly. SpongeBob is also already a licensing phenom, with an anticipated $600 million in retail merchandise sales in 2002.
Upper Deck will be adding these properties to its growing portfolio of licensed CCGs, which includes the white-hot Yu Gi Oh (see 'U.S. Yu Gi Oh CCG Sales Hit $17 Million in 02'), as well as Medabots, Bionicles, Survivor, and Cardcaptors.