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Wiz Kids

Was there magic in their sales pitch?

This story appears in the June 2001 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

What do you get when you combine green ink, a pair of glasses, abroom and two kids? The coveted licensing rights to HarryPotter.

That's how San Francisco game producer University Games didit. Co-founder Bob Moog and former president Jeff Pinsker(who's no longer with the company) used creativity, innovationand their knowledge of Harry Potter to win the rights. They sentgreen-inked letters that they doubled daily, the way it's donein the book. And their costumed kids began the presentation toWarner licensing execs as story characters, conversing with eachother about who would best produce board games about them, at whichpoint Moog and Pinsker joined them in the room. "Wecouldn't let [the Warner people] think we were going toapproach this like any other company," says Moog. "If wedid things [that way], we'd never win.

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