News Worldwide

Der TOYS & GAMES Report - das Fachmagazin für Entscheider*innen aus Toys, Licensing und Entertainment. 

Nachrichten, Trends, Cases, Analysen und Interviews aus der Branche und aus Politik, Gesellschaft und Wirtschaft.

Licensing International Debuts Robust Industry Career Center

Licensing International – the leading trade organization for the brand licensing industry – has launched a new, multi-faceted Career Center designed to connect employers and licensing professionals across all disciplines and career stages with relevant opportunities.  

 

“Providing members of the licensing community with opportunities for professional development and career growth is core to our mission, and one could argue, more important now than ever,” said Maura Regan, President, Licensing International. “Our industry, like most others, is in flux right now, but there is opportunity out there, and this new Career Center will help connect the wealth of talented executives in our industry with companies that need their skills and expertise.”

 

The Licensing International Career Center is available on all devices via the Licensing International website or by going directly to www.LicensingInternational.careerwebsite.com. Here are just some of the exciting new resources available to job seekers and employers–

 

Recruit for Open Positions:

  • Post your jobs, or your organization’s jobs, where the most qualified licensing professionals will find and apply to them.
  • Promote your jobs directly to brand licensing job seekers via our exclusive Job Flash email.
  • Search the resume database and contact qualified candidates proactively.
  • Expose your job postings to a larger audience through our NEW diversity, veterans and social networks. 

Manage your career:

  • Search and apply to the best licensing jobs at organizations worldwide for free
  • Upload an anonymous resume so employers can contact you, but you maintain control of your information and choose to whom you release your information.
  • Receive an alert every time a job becomes available that matches your personal profile, skills, interests, and preferred location(s).
  • Access a broad range of career resources and job searching tips and tools.

It’s always free for anyone to post a resume to the site and apply for jobs. Licensing International members can also post jobs for free, and non-members can choose from a number of flexible packages to list their job opportunties. Licensing International

Graham Saltmarsh Appointed to Lead Licensing International UK

Licensing International – the leading trade organization for the global brand licensing industry – has appointed industry veteran Graham Saltmarsh to head its division in the United Kingdom as Managing Director. Saltmarsh’s appointment marks the beginning of a bold new chapter for Licensing International in the world’s second-largest licensing market. In this role, Saltmarsh will be responsible for advancing the business of licensing across all sectors of the industry in the UK, creating programmes in support of current members and developing initiatives to meet the needs of future members, as well. 

 

Saltmarsh has spent the bulk of his career in licensing-focused roles at some of the world’s most influential media companies including BBC Worldwide and Nelvana. Most recently he served as Director of Licensing & Retail for the UK & Nordics at Turner Broadcasting where he oversaw the consumer product and marketing activities for key properties including “Ben 10,” “Powerpuff Girls” and “Rick & Morty.” Before discovering the joys of licensing, Saltmarsh was a sound engineer and made extreme sports films, so it’s possible he’s responsible for some of the worst music and programmes the ‘80s had to offer. Saltmarsh is a passionate supporter of the licensing industry’s Light Fund and has run the London marathon and rowed from London to Paris with a team of like-minded lunatics. His future fundraising activities will all be beer-related.

 

“In these trying times it’s more important than ever to bring all the different elements of this amazing industry together to share knowledge and expertise,” says Saltmarsh. “I am looking forward to working with Licensing International and to connecting people who are passionate about licensing and retail to drive the business forward.”

 

“We are thrilled to have Graham on board, leading the charge in the UK for Licensing International,” says Licensing International President Maura Regan. “His deep understanding of the UK licensing community, combined with a fantastic ‘can do’ attitude is a wonderful addition to the Licensing International team.”      

 

Saltmarsh will officially move into his new role on 15 September and can be reached at gsaltmarsh@licensing.org. Licensing International

2020 Licensing International Excellence Awards Winners Unveiled

The winners of the 2020 Licensing International Excellence Awards were unveiled earlier today in a first-for-the-industry, live, virtual event that brought together nearly 1000 industry executives from around the world for a much-needed and well-deserved celebration. 

 

The event, hosted by Handcraft VP and stand-up comic Marshall Mizrahi, saw licensing powerhouse Martha Stewart inducted into the Licensing Hall of Fame and a showcase of this year’s six international Rising Stars: Krystyna Braxton (NFL Players Inc.); Allison Cimino (RockLove); Carolina Garcia Souza (Cinecolor Colombia, representative of The Walt Disney Company); Gao Qiang (Tencent); Hannah Stevens (The Point.1888); and Louis Yenik (Crunchyroll). Newly redesigned trophies for both the main Awards and the Hall of Fame were also unveiled at the event, designed by Alternatives and PowerStation Studios, respectively. 

 

The 23 Awards winners hail from around the globe, including companies from Brazil, France, Germany, Korea, the United Kingdom and the U.S., and were unveiled by 10 leading licensing executives who each brought their own special flair to the event. The Coca-Cola Company and Sesame Workshop each “took home” multiple trophies – Coca-Cola swept the Food & Beverage categories, winning Best Product for its Coca-Cola-flavored Tic Tacs in partnership with Ferrero, and picking up the prize for Best Food & Beverage Brand of the Year.  Sesame Workshop’s “Sesame Street” was named Best Live-Action Entertainment or Character Brand and also won for its “A Cautionary Tale” promotion with Squarespace. Meanwhile, Wildbrain CPLG was crowned as the first-ever winner in the newly added Best Licensing Agency category. 

 

A number of companies supported the Licensing International Small Business Global Grants Fund by taking space in the Awards Program, which was made available digitally Monday. Thanks to their contributions, the Grants Fund has raised more than $110,000 to help small businesses in the licensing community impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. To find how to donate to the fund or apply for a grant, click here.  

 

“This year marks the 35th anniversary of the International Licensing Awards, and while we had of course looked forward to celebrating in person, this virtual gathering was an amazing event,” says Maura Regan, President, Licensing International. “Perhaps more than ever it was important to celebrate the incredible creativity and innovation of our industry. Seeing the very best work of this industry on display, alongside some of the dynamic executives who drive it, was a powerful reminder that, in the wake of uncertainty, the power of trusted brands and well-known licenses is more critical than ever before.”

 

Here are the 23 2020 Licensing International Excellence Awards winners:

 

BEST LICENSED PRODUCTS

  • APPAREL / FOOTWEAR / ACCESSORIES – Vans for David Bowie Apparel & Footwear Range
  • APPLIANCE / AUTOMOTIVE / HOUSEWARES / ELECTRONICS ¬¬– Pro-Ject Audio Systems for The Beatles Turntable
  • TOYS / GAMES / NOVELTIES FOR AGES 0-8 – WowWee for Pinkfong Baby Shark Song Puppets 
  • APPS / SOFTWARE / VIDEO GAMES – Story Toys / Touch Press for Lego Duplo World App
  • FOOD / BEVERAGE – The Coca-Cola Company / Ferrero for Coca-Cola Tic Tac
  • HEALTH & BEAUTY AIDS – Lipsmacker for Crayola Lip Care Line
  • HOME DÉCOR – Dreamtex Ltd for National Geographic Recycled Bedding
  • PUBLISHING / BACK-TO-SCHOOL – Party City - Pantone’s 2019 Color of the Year Partygoods & Tableware
  • TOYS / GAMES / NOVELTIES FOR AGES 8+ – Lego for Stranger Things Lego Set

BEST LICENSED BRANDS

  • ART / DESIGN / CELEBRITY / FASHION BRAND – V&A by Victoria & Albert Museum 
  • DIGITAL / APP / VIDEO GAME BRAND – Brown & Friends by LINE Friends
  • CORPORATE BRAND – Cat by Caterpillar  
  • ENTERTAINMENT / CHARACTER BRAND: ANIMATED – Peppa Pig by eOne / Hasbro
  • ENTERTAINMENT / CHARACTER BRAND: LIVE-ACTION – Sesame Street by Sesame Workshop
  • FOOD / BEVERAGE / RESTAURANT BRAND – Coca-Cola by The Coca-Cola Company
  • SPORTS / COLLEGIATE BRAND – Rugby World Cup by World Rugby / IMG

OTHER AWARDS

  • BEST LICENSED PROMOTION – Squarespace & Sesame Street “A Cautionary Tale”
  • BEST LICENSED COLLABORATION – SpongeBob Squarepants x Nike x Kyrie Irving
  • BEST EXPERIENTIAL OR LOCATION-BASED INITIATIVE – The Very Hungry Caterpillar at the Royal Horticultural Society
  • BEST RETAILER FOR A CHARACTER / ENTERTAINMENT INITIATIVE – Galeries Lafayette for Batman 
  • BEST RETAILER FOR A CORPORATE / LIFESTYLE/ SPORTS INITIATIVE – NBA Stores Brazil 
  • BEST LICENSING AGENCY – Wildbrain CPLG
  • THE NEWCOMER AWARD – Harrogate Tipple Ltd for Downton Abbey Gin & Whisky

Licensing International

Squatter to Fly with New Growth Plan

Provided by Bugg Report, Australia

Squatter’s focus on sheep farming reflects the inextricable link between this industry and Australian history more broadly. Since 1797, wool has been central to Australia’s economy, agricultural practices and to the collective consciousness of its people. Early settlers soon discovered that with its infertile soil and dry climate, Australia was well suited to the production of high quality wool. The fibre quickly became the cornerstone of Australian agriculture and the nation is often said to have “ridden on the sheep’s back” as it strove for economic development. The Squatter board-game, which has been a household favourite in Australia for nearly 60 years, offers players a rough simulation of life as a sheep farmer with all the daily trials and tribulations this entails.

 

2022 will see the 60th Anniversary of the Iconic Australian board-game SQUATTER… With in excess of 500,000 games sold in Australia, it is the largest selling Australian game of all time. This is something to be celebrated and has proven the longevity of its game play. The Squatter team have already begun the planning process for a special limited edition 60th Anniversary version of the game and they anticipate that this will be supported with promotional activities and given its heritage, strong media coverage of this event.

 

Recent planning meetings have established a global strategy which will see the brand expand into other similar markets in Australia, which have strong primary producing industries including a commitment to agriculture.

 

The plan focuses on the following:

  • Squatter — Traditional game & additional formats
  • Squatter Custom Division
  • Squatter Licensing and Collaborations
  • Squatter International
  • Squatter

Get ready for the new card game to join the Squatter station.

This structure will form the basis for the on-going growth of the brand and the team are confident of engaging new generations towards the game and the brand, whist strengthening the aspect of the game’s traditional teachings of how one would go about operating a sustainable business, not just in Agriculture.

 

Most excitingly, the development and release of two new formats to be added to the Squatter family… SQUATTER MATES card game and SQUATTER COMPACT for people on the move are now underway. These new additions will allow the business to scale and broaden distribution concurrently. With new price points and innovating design and packaging, this will signal a much greater interest in the brand.

 

Squatter is extending its appeal to younger and more mobile players. Squatter Compact brings all the features of the classic board game in a versatile edition for two-to-four players and is packaged to be travel friendly. Squatter Mates is a card game with a twist for players of all ages who like all the Squatter fun in a faster game.

 

With these two new additions Australia’s iconic game Squatter presents a more compatible format for retailers with products of a distinctly Australian flavour. As these new advances roll-out, the team have been busily re-contacting both Government and primary industry organisations to secure additional re-endorsements for the game. This will provide added comfort to set a path for the game to be accepted into the schools system around the country as a learning tool for accounting methodology and sound business practices.

 

An important pillar in the growth plan will also be to work toward the appointment and partnership with key professionals in international markets, including the United States, Germany, France and the United Kingdom. Squatter hopes to develop a footprint for the brand in these markets initially and as other markets emerge, duplicate the plan.

 

Squatter Game

Another key activation to the plan will be the establishment of a Custom Division. This will allow for the development of special editions of the game, including limited edition versions such as ON THE LAND… Squatter will look to partner with organisations on a collaboration basis where the Squatter brand can assist in enhancing like-brands and together create a powerful marketing tool.

 

Squatter, a favourite with Australian families for decades, is a board game with enduring appeal. Players enter the world of sheep farming, battling droughts and wild dogs, winning at the stock sale and wool market and they experience the ups and downs inflicted by the Tuckerbag. Squatter brings cheers and fears to be fondly remembered for generations. Bugg Report

JAKKS Pacific Expands International Sales Operations With Enhanced Supply Chain, Bolstered Sales Teams

Leading toymaker JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAKK) is pleased to announce strategic moves to enhance direct sales teams and bolster its supply chain in the key international markets of Spain, Italy and Mexico.

 

“It is great to have been able to implement these meaningful updates to our international sales capabilities, within a challenging landscape that has been painfully affected by the COVID-19 pandemic”

 

With a new distribution and logistics facility, based in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, JAKKS is well positioned to support its direct sales. By moving goods through Rotterdam, the largest gateway into Europe, JAKKS will be able to achieve increased economies of scale with centralized all-continental European distribution operations.

 

“It is great to have been able to implement these meaningful updates to our international sales capabilities, within a challenging landscape that has been painfully affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dan Cooney, EVP JAKKS International Division. “We have further established our ability to sell directly, as appropriate, while continuing to nurture and protect our very strong network of all-important distribution partners.”

 

In addition to its European activities, and after many years of expanding direct selling efforts in Mexico, JAKKS’ Mexico City office is now fully established to manage 100% of its direct sales in the market. This office will both enhance the operations and finance team in the Mexico City, as well as serve as a hub for all LATAM customer support, retailers and distributors.

 

JAKKS will continue to work with its key distributor partners worldwide to maximize sales opportunities for its broad multi-category portfolio of licensed brands, as well as products based on JAKKS’ internal I.P.. Jakks Pacific

USA - Licensing International - Diversity & Inclusion in the Licensing Industry

Licensing International – the leading trade organization for the brand licensing industry – hosted its first Diversity & Inclusion Workshop Monday, August 3, bringing together some of the leading minds in licensing and retail to discuss the challenges and opportunities organizations face as they look to enhance diversity and inclusive practices in their workforces and culture.

 

Madeline Di Nonno, CEO of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media at Mount Saint Mary’s University kicked off the event with a presentation of the findings of their recent benchmarking study of diversity in the licensing industry, commissioned by Licensing International. Among other findings, the research shows that while 30% of companies surveyed currently have a D&I program in place, only 10% have budgeted financial support to those programs. 

 

“If you don’t measure, you don’t you have any substantive understanding of where things stand or a benchmark by which to gauge success,” says Maura Regan, President, Licensing International. “This research is the crucial first step in creating real, lasting change in our companies and the global licensing community as a whole.”

 

The full research study is now available for download at www.LicensingInternational.org

 

Following the presentation of the research results, newly elected Licensing International Board Member Steven Wolfe Pereira, CEO & Co-Founder of Encantos, was joined by Petco’s Chief Marketing Officer Tariq Hassan, for a screenside chat about what it means to create an organization that is truly inclusive and how to go about doing it. 

 

“You cannot only do this from executive-level down,” said Hassan. “If you want to tell people to bring their authentic selves to work, you’ve got to allow them to have a place to express it, and you’ve got to allow it to then influence the decisions of the company. … ‘You don’t have to ask for permission to be who you are’ – we have to create a culture that celebrates that insistence. When you put it that way, it stops being about what’s wrong, and it focuses on the energy and creativity of what’s right.”

 

The panelists who participated in the third part of the event echoed that sentiment, and shared details about how they are nurturing diversity at their own companies. They included: Bryony Bouyer, Senior Vice President, Diversity & Inclusion and Multicultural Strategy at Hasbro; Cindy Levitt, Senior Vice President of Licensing, Mad Engine LLC; Dolores Ordas, Vice President of People and Culture, Mad Engine LLC; and Eric Ueno, SVP of Human Resources of Hot Topic Inc. 

 

Here are just some of the insights that were shared: 

  • Bryony Bouyer, Hasbro: “We always like to say that diversity and inclusion is not a strategy, it’s a value. Each of us own it differently. … This doesn’t work if our middle managers in particular aren’t driving it.”
  • Dolores Ordas, Mad Engine: “When you’re talking about inclusion, you’re talking about how do we leverage the different perspectives and skillsets to our strategic advantage?” a point that was echoed by Bouyer who said: “At the end of the day, multiple points of view drive innovation, which drives dollars.”
  • Eric Ueno of Hot Topic focused on the hiring process and said one key element was “paying attention to how you communicate with potential candidates – images, social posts, the words that you use, that those words reflect the goal of the diversity and inclusion and belongingness in your organization.” 
  • Cindy Levitt, Mad Engine said that transparency is key, in particular “making it a safe environment for everyone to talk about this very openly. … For everyone to really embrace it, we have to have an open forum internally to discuss it.”

Much of the conversation throughout the event centered on where and how organizations can start to take action. To that end, Licensing International is proud to share its new Diversity & Inclusion Toolkit, developed in conjunction with the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media. For the next month, Licensing International is making this Toolkit available to the global licensing community at large, after which time it will continue to be available to Licensing International members and partner trade organizations. 

 

Download your copy of the Diversity & Inclusion Toolkit here.

Licensing International