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Philip Kives

  • Birthplace: Oungre, Saskatchewan, Canada
  • Birthday: February 12
Date of passing: 
April 27, 2016

Obituary

Obituary: 

Philip Kives was an infomercial pitchman, best known for his fast-talking style and his pioneering “As Seen on TV” marketing approach. He was also the founder of K-Tel, which sold household gadgets including the Miracle Brush, Feather Touch Knife, Veg-O-Matic and many compilation albums.

In 1962, Kives launched the company, and gave his first five-minute pitch for a non-stick Teflon frying pan the same year. Before the company took off, the pitchman tried selling his wares door-to-door and in person on Atlantic City’s boardwalk.

Once K-Tel took off, Kives added products from Seymour Popiel to his lineup, including the Dial-O-Matic, among others. His biggest seller, however, was the Miracle Brush, which sold 28 million units by the late 1960s. Kives also sold more than 10 million copies of his top-selling compilation album, Hooked on Classics. The albums were sold via TV commercials that he wrote and directed himself.

In 2006, he appeared as himself in the TV movie documentary As Seen on TV: The K-Tel Story.

Philip Kives was an infomercial pitchman, best known for his fast-talking style and his pioneering “As Seen on TV” marketing approach. He was also the founder of K-Tel, which sold household gadgets including the Miracle Brush, Feather Touch Knife, Veg-O-Matic and many compilation albums.

In 1962, Kives launched the company, and gave his first five-minute pitch for a non-stick Teflon frying pan the same year. Before the company took off, the pitchman tried selling his wares door-to-door and in person on Atlantic City’s boardwalk.

Once K-Tel took off, Kives added products from Seymour Popiel to his lineup, including the Dial-O-Matic, among others. His biggest seller, however, was the Miracle Brush, which sold 28 million units by the late 1960s. Kives also sold more than 10 million copies of his top-selling compilation album, Hooked on Classics. The albums were sold via TV commercials that he wrote and directed himself.

In 2006, he appeared as himself in the TV movie documentary As Seen on TV: The K-Tel Story.

His infomercials were famously satirized in Dan Aykroyd’s “Bass-O-Matic” sketches on Saturday Night Live.

Kives died April 27, 2016, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. He was 87.

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