"Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success." - Henry Ford
WHERE IT ALL STARTED
Redphin Productions LLC, founded in 2006 by father and son team Carson and Aaron Lev, is a rapidly expanding licensing and marketing agency, specializing in the automotive industry. Their daily focus is the exclusive management of the brands and trademarks owned by some of the biggest celebrity names in the automotive world. Services also include everything from marketing programs to conceptual design work. The employees of Redphin offer unparalleled expertise and enthusiasm that come from decades of immersion in car culture, both as fans and entrepreneurs.
We dedicate ourselves to every project
When managing the brands of clients, the goal is to increase brand awareness and revenue through relevant and creative licensing, sponsorship and marketing programs. Redphin seeks to partner clients with reputable licensees and sponsors, resulting in mutually beneficial alliances. The core equities of the intellectual properties managed are always carefully maintained and protected, and ultimately, enhanced. Additional value comes from unique marketing concepts and superior automotive knowledge. Redphin works diligently to make every deal a success, for our clients and our partners.
WANT TO WORK TOGETHER?
Redphin has been honored to negotiate agreements, on behalf of our clients, with renowned global companies such as The Walt Disney Company, 3M, John Deere, Ford Motor Corporation, Toyota Motor Sales USA, eBay, Stanley Black & Decker, Oakley, BASF Corporation and Pirelli Tire. You can find the Redphin staff, sometimes even the Redphin show car, at local and national car shows, races, trade shows and vehicle auctions – anywhere the automotive spirit is alive. Should you cross paths with any members of our Redphin team, please say hello and see if we might be of any help to you or your business.
MEET OUR TEAM
CEO & PRESIDENT
Growing up in Southern California, Carson Lev was immersed in hot rod car culture at an early age. His friends and schoolmates were the children of race car owners, builders and drivers. His early teenage years were spent hanging out at Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s customizing shop and the studio of automotive artist Kenny Youngblood. Through the early influence of “Big Daddy” and “Blood”, a passion for hot rods, car design, illustration, pin-striping and lettering was nurtured and encouraged. As his automotive passion grew, so did Carson’s foundation of friends and contacts in the Hot Rod Community, resulting in many life-long friendships. Through High School and College he continued to build hot rods, letter race cars, attend car shows and races of some kind nearly every weekend.[read more="Read more" less="Read less"]Graduating in 1977 from California State University at Long Beach, with a degree in Industrial Design, Carson pursued a career in Biomedical Product Development but still managed to stay active in the automotive field. His strong interest in car culture and Automotive Design resulted in his taking a break from the Medical Product Development field to work for Dick Cepek Off Road, as the Director of Product Development, Marketing and Advertising. He also began consulting on numerous automotive aftermarket projects.
Carson combined his interest in computer technology and design by founding Compression Engineering, an Advanced Product Development and Design Firm in 1994. Located in Orange County, California, projects were completed for Medical Product Manufacturers, and Automotive Design and Manufacturing clients utilizing state-of-the-art computer technologies. Suddenly, all the old friends in the Hot Rod community were becoming customers. An experimental project with Boyd’s Wheels and noted designer Chip Foose, led to a new computer based machining process to produce custom billet wheels. It also resulted in Chip and Carson becoming close friends.
Through Compression Engineering Carson began his first association with Mattel Inc., successfully completing projects for the Hot Wheels division. A deal was struck to bring Carson to Mattel, where he successfully served as Director of Engineering, Director of Design and ultimately Director of Hot Wheels Licensing, where he achieved first-year milestone sales in excess $4 million. As Director of Design Hot Wheels, Carson was responsible for the successful growth of the Hot Wheels Racing and Collector product lines, the creation of the Hot Wheels Licensed Automotive Program, the Hot Wheels Exhibit at the legendary Petersen Automotive Museum and the 35th Annual Hot Wheels Hall of Fame Event hosted by Jay Leno. Additionally, Carson managed the construction of the full scale Twin Mill and the Deora II, the only Hot Wheels toys to be turned into fully functioning full-scale vehicles.
In April 2005, Carson left Mattel after ten years of service to work with licensing giant Equity Management, Inc. as Senior Vice President / General Manager. He was responsible for the company’s General Motors Licensing programs, including Service Parts Organization and Accessories. He also directed EMI’s expanding die-cast program, chairing a new committee to provide strategic planning and vision for the company’s die-cast operations. However, with the rapid rise of Chip Foose, now starring weekly on TLC’s hit show “Overhaulin’,” Carson felt the time had come to start his own licensing agency. Redphin Productions, LLC was created as the exclusive Licensing Firm for Foose Design, Inc. and since added Ivan “Ironman” Stewart, Chris Jacobs, Troy Ladd, Hollywood Hot Rods, Ryan Friedlinghaus and West Coast Customs to their expanding roster of clients. Lev’s unique combination of management experience and extensive real world, practical knowledge of the car
hobby give him a unique perspective on the current state of the licensing industry.
Carson has hosted and been a featured guest on numerous hot rod and automotive related television and radio programs. He was inducted into the Inaugural Class for the Die-cast Hall of Fame in 2008, and was recognized as a Distinguished Alumni by California State University Long Beach in 2011. [/read]
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT & CFO
As Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and minority partner of the automotive licensing and marketing firm, Redphin Productions, LLC, Aaron Lev is responsible for the day-to-day operations of this rapidly expanding company. Redphin Productions was founded in 2006 by Aaron and his father, Carson, with an emphasis on establishing themselves as industry experts in the automotive segment of licensing. Lev’s responsibilities include financial modeling, account management, client reporting, product approvals, contract reviews, legal correspondence and contract negotiations. He is intricately involved in all aspects of the business, from product category brainstorming to final product approval.[read more="Read more" less="Read less"]Prior to his work with Redphin Productions, Lev obtained valuable licensing experience at both Mattel, Inc. and Equity Management, Inc. where he saw both sides of the licensing equation, affording him the experience of having represented the interests of both licensee and licensor. After graduating from California State University at Long Beach in 2001 with degrees in Finance and Marketing, a summer internship at Mattel turned into 5 years on the job, where he left as a Senior Royalty Accountant. While there, Aaron’s duties included the quarterly creation of customized royalty reports for over 200 licensors. Licensor contracts that Lev supervised were NASCAR, General Motors, Ferrari, Chrysler, Dodge and Nickelodeon. He was also responsible for the content analysis and auditing of Hot Wheels and Matchbox SKU assortment and also supervised the international affiliate royalty billing process.
His time at Mattel led to the opportunity to work at Equity Management, Inc. where he served as the account manager for the Top 250 revenue producing licensing agreements. Exposure to the trademark licenses of brands including Maytag, General Motors, Kawasaki and Lockheed Martin in product categories as diverse as die-cast vehicles, kitchen appliances, video games, water heaters and apparel showed Lev the capabilities of a successful licensing program.
Drawing from these past experiences and yearning to learn from new ones, Aaron is committed to advancing Redphin, and their clients, to the forefront of the licensing industry.[/read]
HOT WHEELS SNAPSHOT
It all started with a hot wheel car, not a toy, but the full size, fully functional Twin Mill.
When Mattel made the decision to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Hot Wheels, the concept was developed to take an iconic Hot Wheels toy design and turn it into a real car. Going from 1:64 scale to full scale took a great deal of effort. At that time I was the Director of Design for Hot Wheels and responsible for the build of the Twin Mill. I had the idea of introducing this full size toy to the real car world at the SEMA Show in 2001 in Las Vegas.[read more="Read more" less="Read less"] Mattel had previously displayed there, but in a small way and with toys only. I felt the need to present a much bigger idea, an early attempt at lifestyle marketing in place of product marketing. I approached my Design Staff with a radical new idea...“What if Hot Wheels were a real car company? What would we make? What if we made motor oil, wheels, tools, custom paint, clothing, car wax....what would it look like?” The exercise yielded groundbreaking ideas and promoted Hot Wheels as much more than a cool toy, but as a lifestyle. Selected items were developed as props to be displayed with the Twin Mill: billet custom wheels, car wax packaging, paint samples, clothing and tools; all branded Hot Wheels. It suddenly appeared that Hot Wheels was a major player in the automotive aftermarket and licensees were interested. By the end of the week, numerous licensing contracts were drafted and signed, and Hot Wheels had been launched into the collateral products world. “I was doing this from passion, but knew something was there from a business sense” Subsequent research revealed that 45 million men grew up with Hot Wheels, and still had strong affinity for the brand. But this audience would demand real automotive products, not just cool toys. Faster than the Twin Mill doing a burnout, I was honored to be put in charge of Hot Wheels Adult Licensing, growing the business to new levels and reinforcing the tagline “World’s Coolest Car Company”. [/read]