Could a 29Rooms bedding collection be coming soon? Women’s media brand Refinery29 on Wednesday announced a new lifestyle product licensing deal with Hollywood management company IMG.
Representing models like Chrissy Teigen, Gigi Hadid and Cara Delevingne, IMG entered the multiyear deal with Refinery29 as its first global licensing partner — but that doesn’t necessarily mean IMG’s A-list talent will be co-branding clothing or merch.
The plan is to release products in health, beauty, apparel, accessories, office, home, bedding and decor categories. IMG will develop the strategy for the media brand and negotiate licensing deals. Though it’s “too early to say” if collaborations with IMG talent are on the horizon, a rep for IMG said “anything is possible.” Maybe we’ll be getting a Gigi Hadid fanny pack or Chrissy Teigen moisturizer?
The media company appears to be taking a cue from fellow millennial media brands like BuzzFeed, which offers merch on its own shop and on Amazon. The move into licensed product also follows Refinery29’s success in experiential event planning with 29Rooms last year, the Instagrammable phenomenon that has attracted as guests and collaborators the likes of Janelle Monae, Demi Lovato, Rashida Jones, Margot Robbie and Jessica Alba.
So, will Refinery29’s latest venture tie back into its photogenic fun house?
“A 29Rooms bedding line is absolutely on the table,” said a rep from Refinery29. “With the partnership with IMG, we are thinking even more broadly about where Refinery29 and its sub-brands, such as 29Rooms and others, can bring young women new creative product lines that fill a void in the market.”
Apparel, decor or bedding themed after 29Rooms could include nods to rooms with fingerprints, a “love wins” rainbow, “I stand with Planned Parenthood” light-up sign, a giant typewriter, a foliage chandelier, punching bags or a nautical seascape, among other whimsical backdrops.
The rep added, “We are excited to be working with the leading experts in the space, IMG, to help bring this vision to life.”
IMG’s licensing director Van Kokeh said they were drawn to Refinery29 in part because it champions women. “Together, we will identify partners that are aligned with their core values to create thoughtful and inclusive products that are relevant to their consumers,” Kokeh said in a statement.
“We are excited to expand our direct to consumer business to forge deeper connections with our audience and create additional opportunities to better serve her,” Refinery29 COO Sarah Personette said in a statement. “IMG’s proven ability to license premium content with relevance and scale will further drive awareness of Refinery29 as a discovery platform for consumers and brands.”