Acorn Media Grows a Branch

From acorns mighty oaks grow—and perhaps mighty catalogs. Next week Acorn U.S., a Washington-based producer/marketer of British television programs on video and DVD, plans to mail the debut issue of a spin-off selling healthy-living videos and related merchandise.

Named Acacia, after a tree that flourishes in harsh environments, the new catalog will target primarily women 35-65 years old. The Acorn consumer catalog targets men as well as women. Acorn also has a wholesale division.

“We’ve had an interest in branching off over the last year or two because we felt there was a growing interest in [the holistic lifestyle] arena,” says Miguel Penella, president of Acorn U.S.’s Acorn Direct division. “We feel the Acorn and Acacia catalogs will complement each other. It will also help drive our wholesale business, and that will help the direct-to-consumer side as well.”

Penella says there would be a 10% overlap in product with the Acorn catalog. Videos and DVDs will cover yoga, organic foods, holistic medicines, and physical therapy, among other subjects. The catalog will sell home accessories, personal care products, and other lifestyle items as well. The initial drop will mail to 10% of its house file, or about 30,000 names. Penella expects to ship 2 million Acacia catalogs in its first year, to prospects as well as to customers.