There some interesting snippets in the article
Why she was hired:
“She became the third Hello Kitty designer in 1980, two years after joining Sanrio straight out of arts university. With her two predecessors having left the company and with Kitty’s popularity declining, Yamaguchi’s mission was to recover sales.”
And as for the future’
“Asked about her next challenge, Yamaguchi said she wants to attract boys.”
“I want boys to join the superhero Ichigoman fan club. Unlike other Sanrio characters, Ichigoman is a fighting character. We aim to make it into an anime and ultimately making it a TV series of a story about a hero.”
already Sario Japan had put out an Ichigoman short
IT kind of cute but can it really reach boys? I think Darkcapeman (the black kitty) is a beet fit.