“Kiss is the most successful merch band ever,” says Jordan Jacobs, an entertainment lawyer who manages the Canadian band Down with Webster, which Simmons attempted to sign, and serves as legal counsel for the Toronto-based group The Envy, which Simmons did sign and is now meticulously moulding to his precise marketing specifications. “I wanted them to stop writing things like, ‘I miss you. I can’t live without you,’” says Simmons, who calls The Envy a “cutesy” band.
“I wanted them to write a song called Fingers Crossed.” Simmons says he then created and trademarked The Envy’s crossed fingers logo, which is meant to be adopted by young adoring fans in the manner of the Demon’s own infamous horns hand gesture (pinkie and index finger up; second and third digits down).
…on Tuesday he will address Advertising Week in a presentation sponsored by the Star. Simmons says his base rate for such talks is $100,000, plus first-class airfare, plus hotel. If he takes the kids and “Miss Shannon Tweed” along as part of the presentation team, the fee rises sharply. (…)
All these years later and the licensing of Kiss memorabilia appears unstoppable — the Demon Slurpee cup sold 13 million units, he says. Total sales? More than $500 million. And what about the margins on the merch? Fifteen per cent on the little stuff, he says. (…)
Simmons has frequently said his aim is simple: “To be Disney without the overhead.”