Through the Looking Glass

Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland celebrates its 150th anniversary this year, and a number of British marketers are capitalizing on the event. About 10 of The British Library’s 35 licensees are creating Alice product under British Library branding; the institution has the original book in its holdings. The most successful licensee to date is Moleskin, […]

Continue Reading

Of Brits and Baking

One observation from recent visits to several supermarkets in London—Sainsburys, Tesco, and Waitrose among them—is the strong role licensing plays in bakery-related categories, namely cake and cupcake kits and celebration cakes. Cake kits are pouch-packaged cake, cookie, or cupcake mixes with a value-added accessory, such as a cookie cutter or a set of cupcake cases, […]

Continue Reading

Following the Crowd

A number of licensors have turned to crowdsourcing to inspire and test new products and categories. To name just a few examples, toy companies such as LEGO and Mattel have implemented innovation programs to allow their consumers to suggest and vote on new toy ideas, while a variety of crowdsourcing sites, Designed by Humans and […]

Continue Reading

A Shave and a Haircut

Licensed products have been slowly growing as a presence in the men’s shaving and grooming industry over the past four to five years, although they still represent a small slice of the business. Examples are diverse, ranging from entertainment/character properties (such as Popeye and Turner Classic Movies, both with Razor MD) to celebrities (Carmelo Anthony […]

Continue Reading

A Starring Role for Single Episodes

Entertainment IP owners are keeping their licensing programs fresh by developing limited merchandise arrays based on specific episodes of their TV series. A number of factors dictate the viability of these efforts: Unexpected demand. Cartoon Network licensee Cryptozoic created a board game called Card Wars, which brought to life a game played in a breakout […]

Continue Reading

Athletes Helping Athletes

Professional athletes have been taking more control of their consumer products and other commercial ventures over the past several years. They are increasingly stepping outside the bounds of their players’ associations to extend their own brands, and they are playing a more central role in designing, managing, and financing their products and promotions, often in […]

Continue Reading

Multitasking Is In Fashion

Fashion licensing has many singular qualities compared to sports, character, corporate trademark, art, and other segments of the business. One of the most unusual is the propensity for designers to maintain and license under their own names while simultaneously overseeing fashion labels tied to other designers. While the relationships tend to come and go, some […]

Continue Reading

LGBT in the News

From Kim Davis refusing to issue gay marriage licenses in Kentucky, to the transition of Bruce Jenner to Caitlyn, to Michael Sam becoming the first gay player in the NFL, themes and issues relating to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered community have been in the news a lot lately. That is starting to be […]

Continue Reading

No Longer Niche?

As little as a year ago there was skepticism as to whether streaming-only entertainment properties, without TV, film, or franchise backing, would be viable for licensing any time soon. This perception is changing quickly. It is not yet known whether widespread licensing programs tied to shows available only on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and the […]

Continue Reading

Talk to the Animals

Celebrities and pet products have been two of the most active areas of the licensing business over the last several years. While certainly there are hits and misses in both arenas, licensors and licensees continue to forge deals involving each sector on a regular basis. It makes one wonder: Why are there not more celebrity […]

Continue Reading