Nickelodeon Creates New Position Just to Deal with Wal-Mart

Top entertainment merchandiser makes handling the mega-chain Ron Johnson's sole job focus

Need any more evidence that Wal-Mart has become a powerful influencer of the entertainment business?

Nickelodeon and Viacom Consumer Products, one of the top entertainment business’ top merchandise peddlers, selling $5.5 billion in “Dora the Explorer,” “SpongeBob SquarePants” and other assorted licensed chachkies last year, has named Ron Johnson in the newly created position of senior VP, Wal-Mart development.

“Ron’s 20 years of experience in the marketing and sales field, his proven track record of creating innovative and highly successful global retail programs and his understanding of Wal-Mart makes him the perfect fit for this job,” said Leigh Anne Brodsky, president of Viacome Consumer Products.