Aldo Sansone, commercial director at BolognaFiere Group, explains why next month's Bologna Licensing Trade Fair is set to be one to remember. And it's just not just due to the wonderful food.
How was last year’s show, and are you confident that the 2016 fair can bring greater numbers?
With two weeks left until the show kicks off, we can say that all the exhibition area is totally sold out with an increase of 30% on the sqm sold.
We have also increased the number of exhibitors and the type of exhibition areas. So it is almost evident that the Bologna Licensing Trade Fair has definitely increased upon the 2015 edition.
What is new for this year's show?
We have for the first time the attendance of international majors as Disney, Warner, Viacom and Sanrio.
Moreover we have conceived two new exhibition areas, totally sold out, which are: the IllustrArt & Licensing section with new talent from the world of illustration exhibiting their artwork for consumer products potential developments.
They are all international, from Spain, Mexico, France, Netherlands, Germany, Japan and more.
Then we have also set up for the first time a Licensees Lounge. This is an area where licensees can show their licensed products to the several buyers attending the show. The first licensees who joined this innovative business lounge are Cartamundi, Sun City and Maikii.
Why should those based in the UK make the trip this year?
Bologna is a unique and world-wide content hub.
As well as the Licensing Show, where you can see what is hottest in the licensing business with a natural focus in the Italian and South Europe territory, visitors can also join the prestigious Bologna Children's Book Fair, which is the global leading kids publishing event for B2B visitors, and the new Bologna Digital Media Hall with the best international digital industry attending as exhibitors.
Over 100 events per day, over 1300 exhibitors from 73 countries: Bologna is a huge rights and content place, largely considered the world leader.
How many exhibitors are confirmed for this year’s show?
At this year's Licensing Show, we have 60 exhibitors confirmed and around 800 brands represented.
What advice would you give to those attending the show for the first time?
To fix meetings, attend masterclass events and to make a complete visit of the Bologna Show. And don't forget to taste the wonderful food of Bologna!