PHS, Vanderex Debut PLAY! Line in Quebec
The PLAY! line includes vibes, cockrings, blinds, crops, whips, clamps and restraints designed in red and black with tasteful packaging aimed at suburban couples, the company's target clientele.
“Working with Vanderex is a privilege — our target audience from conception was exactly what Vanderex owns,” PHS Sales and Marketing Manager Michael Merrill said. “To land this deal validates our goal: to deliver quality, fully branded product tastefully packaged for the everyday couple.”
According to Vanderex CEO Annie Cabana, the PLAY! line’s packaging and overall marketing plan is an ideal fit for Vanderex’s chain of Kama Sutra boutiques.
“PHS has ‘extreme’ products presented in a mainstream way; the success and popularity of its products is based primarily on the visual aspect,” Cabana said. “We think that’s the way to go in the future, and that’s why PHS stands out from the competition.”
Cabana created a special “Prêts à Jouer?” — which translates to “Ready to Play?” — marketing campaign for PLAY!
“Annie is amazing at creating an atmosphere and attracting customers who are savvy and chic,” Merrill said. “We portray the couple as equals: one person is not dominating another. The image suggests sex as fun and playful, and that this line of toys is for everyone to experience, not just dungeon doms.”
Merrill attributes a recent increase in Canadian sales to Canadian consumers' positive attitude toward sex.
“The Canadian consumer sees toys as relationship enhancers and not nasty taboo fetish items” Merrill said. “The U.S. is on its way there, but Canada seems to be a little ahead of the curve.”
PHS International, which won Novelty Company of the Year at the 2008 XBIZ Awards, has been a distributor of rainbow pride merchandise for more than 18 years. In 2007, PHS launched three new BDSM-inspired lines: M2M, PLAY! and FRESH.