M&S.com has signed a new partnership with Early Learning Centre to start selling its toys and products via its online platform in time for the Christmas shopping season.
The tie-up with The Entertainer-owned pre-school and baby brand arrives as the second guest brand under M&S’ Never the Same Again programme and part of the retailer’s commitment to ‘turbocharging growth online.’
Under the deal, over 200 toys will be added to the M&S website and app to sit alongside its current kidswear and gifting ranges for Christmas.
The curated Early Learning Centre range includes a number of ELC own brand items from cash registers, to pirate ships to farm animals. It also includes some of children’s best loved branded toys including Peppa Pig, Playmobil, Happyland and Paw Patrol.
Stephen Langford, M&S.com director, said: “We’ve begun to test & learn opening up M&S.com to complementary brands to broaden appeal and help turbocharge online growth. With more customers shopping online this Christmas than ever before, we wanted to strengthen our offer with a selection of Early Learning Centre toys to sit alongside our popular kidswear and gifting ranges.
“We have over 200 products that can help make Christmas magical for the little ones from trikes, to train sets to talking soft toys. The Early Learning Centre team is experienced at operating as a guest brand and they offer great quality, great value toys – we’re really looking forward working together.”
In February 2019 the Early Learning Centre was acquired by The Entertainer. Today there are over 300 ELC stores internationally.
Gary Grant, founder and executive chairman of The Entertainer, added: “We are extremely proud of our Early Learning Centre brand. It has an amazing heritage, supporting children’s learning and development through play for nearly 50 years. ELC is trusted by parents and grandparents alike, many of whom remember the brand being part of their own childhoods.
“We’re delighted to be partnering with M&S to offer a range of ELC toys via the M&S website, to bring delight and excitement to children through play. Our partnership with M&S will enable us to make the ELC brand even more accessible to our customers online.”