Properties From Unexpected Places

Homegrown properties represent ever-stronger competition for multinational licensors in territories around the world. This is true not only in well-established markets but in countries such as China, India, and Turkey, where licensing is newer.

Even territories that are nowhere near the center of global licensing executives’ radar are starting to produce licensed properties for both local and sometimes global consumers. Examples from 2014 include:

  • Ukraine. Ukrainian designer Masha Reva was highlighted as part of a Pepsi- and Vogue Italia-sponsored fashion collaboration. The venture also included 13 other designers from Italy, the U.S., China, United Arab Emirates, India, and Bahrain. Pepsi is investing $50,000 to help Reva’s label develop.
  • Bangladesh. Bangladesh hosted the ICC World T20 cricket championship, with the organizing committee overseeing a licensing program encompassing apparel, gifts and novelties, accessories, face paint, and horns. Merchandise sported the logos of the event and the 26 teams playing in it. Products were available at the stadium and at retail shops in and near Dhaka, where the tournament was held.
  • Vietnam. The mobile game Flappy Bird, created by Vietnamese developer Dong Nguyen, last summer secured licensees including Concept One for accessories and Character World for bedding, both based in the U.K. The game had quickly gained a global following.

None of these countries is a licensing hotspot yet, nor have any notable licensing success stories emerged. But the number of deals allowing for the manufacture and/or distribution of licensed merchandise within their borders is slowly on the rise in all three.

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