After scooping the Manager of the Year gong at this year’s People Awards, Bulldog Licensing’s Helena Mansell Stopher feels building trusting relationships is the key to success in the industry.
Congratulations on receiving the award! What are your thoughts on winning?
There are so many talented and hardworking people within this wonderful industry, it was such an honour and privilege to win.
What has 2017 been like so far for you?
Amazing, we started off the year visiting the Hong King Toy Fair and saw some inspiring new toy lines, Hong Kong was a whirlwind and the year hasn’t settled down yet. Every trade show and meeting attended has been extremely positive for the entire Bulldog catalogue of brands, 2018 is looking pretty exciting too.
Are there any achievements in particular you’d like to share?
The entire team have done an amazing job of making sure we drive a full programme for our brands, of which none would be possible without our partners’ continued support and commitment.
Shopkins has been a particular highlight with how we have worked together to continuously drive the brand forward, we have a fantastic licensee base for Miraculous and even brands such as Bullseye, Enid Blyton and the new Crystal Maze are all gaining some fantastic momentum within the industry and that’s just to name a few.
The licensing industry is extremely entrepreneurial as it covers so many diverse categories, and business areas.
What are your thoughts on awards such as the Licensing.biz People Awards? Do you feel it is important to shine the light on people in the industry?
To succeed in licensing you have to build trusting relationships, and deliver on your promises. To be able to recognise and reward this is extremely important, its all about the people, so the Licensing.biz People Awards is very fitting to the industry.
How long have you worked with Bulldog? What is it about the company you enjoy so much?
I have been at Bulldog for just over two years now, feels much longer as I have known Rob Corney our MD for over 16 years. We are an extremely nimble, efficient and hardworking team who happen to have a lot of fun at work. I’m always amazed by the amount we manage to achieve in such short periods of time.
What are your thoughts on the licensing industry? What do you enjoy the most about working in this sector?
The licensing industry is extremely entrepreneurial as it covers so many diverse categories, and business areas. You can not only drive your business through insights (as each category is a business within itself), but also look at new and innovate ways to market a brand, to drive that consumer message in a completely different way, even direct with the retailer.
Anything else you’d like to add?
For me it is exciting to see the landscape starting to change and mature for the licensing industry. Insights and data are having a positive effect on external industries looking in and we are now able to ‘speak the same language’, which is enabling us to attract brands in to the industry that would not have done so in the past, and vice versa.