Sunday, April 14, 2024

Licensing Expo to foster 3,000-plus attendee meetings with licensors

The global licensing community is ready to re-convene at Licensing Expo, held this May 24-26 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center for its first in-person gathering since 2019.

Attendees and exhibitors are eager to meet with existing and potential new partners, as indicated by the 3,000-plus meetings confirmed to date on the event’s online platform. Thousands of registered guests are leveraging the online platform as a strategic tool to preemptively book meetings in advance of the in-person event before schedules fill up, guaranteeing face-to-face time with brands of interest.

Even with less than two weeks remaining, registration numbers continue to rise with retailers and manufacturers signing on to meet directly with the owners of the world’s biggest brands, discover the latest trends, sift through the IPs available for license, learn from industry experts, and network with peers.

Among the latest registrants to sign up are Wayfair, Urban Decay Cosmetics (L’Oréal), TJX, Burlington Stores, H&M, Forever 21, Aldi, AMC Theatres, Build-a-Bear Workshop, Claire’s Accessories, Paladone Products, Rue21, Moleskine, General Mills, Kohl’s, Levi Strauss & Co, Panini Spa, and Super RTL GmbH.

Notably, large groups from Mad Engine, Hallmark, Bioworld, Hot Topic, Target, Walmart, Centric Brands, and Jakks Pacific have registered and will be walking the show floor to meet and network with the 230-plus exhibitors.

“As we emerge from the pandemic, we’re seeing licensing take off as a strategic approach to meet consumers where they are and enhance their experience with the brands they love,” said Anna Knight, SVP of the Global Licensing Group. “There is so much pent-up demand for an in-person event of Licensing Expo’s scale and breadth across categories, especially as retailers and manufacturers search out new ways to engage with their customers in a more meaningful and intentional way.”

InPark Editor Judith Rubin had the chance to interview SVP of the Global Licensing Group Anna Knight about the future of licensing and location-based entertainment.

Knight added, “Meetings are being booked faster than they ever have before — if you haven’t accessed the online platform yet, we encourage you to do so to set yourself up for success and ensure a productive time on-site.”

While historically, Entertainment and Characters dominated the $292 billion global licensing industry, emergent categories increasingly harness the power of brand extension strategies to reach new audiences and build a loyal fan base. This cross-category investment in licensing is reflected by the wide range of brands confirmed for the upcoming event, ranging from Art & Design, Gaming and eSports, Fashion and Apparel, Toys and Kids, Sports, Technology, to Location-Based Entertainment.

The latest exhibitors confirmed to participate include Microcosmic International LA Inc., IMC TOYS (CRY BABIES), Dipit, High Times, Death Row Records x Snoop Dogg, National Basketball Association, 2nd Coming Comix / The Bunker Media Group, Get Down Art, Drizzle Art, Dylan Sky, All Star Kid LLC, Merry Marble Trees, Dancing Lemurs, BM Srl, Garena Free Fire and BenjiLock, LLC. New brands exhibiting their portfolio of licensable IPs include Jazwares, LAI Games, Netflix, and Riot Games. The full exhibitor list can be found here.

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