Brand Licensing Europe details major retail programme for 2019 show

Brand Licensing Europe is boasting a ‘packed programme for retailers’ at its event this October, as the London licensing show details a slate of new daily briefings, as well as a Retail Trends Lounge with a dedicated educational programme.

BLE, which is celebrating its 21st anniversary, takes place from October 1 to 3 this year at London’s ExCeL. Visitor registration is open now at

This year will see retailers treated to:

New daily breakfast briefings. Held between 8am-9am at The Bridge restaurant within ExCeL, retailers can tuck into a complimentary breakfast and learn about that day’s highlights while the BLE team will be on hand to answer questions and queries.

New Retail Trends Lounge: Retailers will have exclusive access to the lounge to hold meetings, catch up with colleagues or just take a breather and enjoy free refreshments. The Retail Trends Lounge will feature a brand-new theatre with content designed specifically and solely for retailers.

New Trends Programme: Featuring five sessions over three days delivered by four of BLE’s partners – Trend Bible, IMRG, GfK and The Insights People – the programme ties into themes and activations at BLE 2019.

Tuesday, October 1, 11am to 11.45am and Wednesday, October 2, 3.15pm to 4pm: Why Trends Matter for Licensing. A panel session featuring speakers Joanna Feeley, founder & CEO, and Lauren Zayya, senior trend strategist, Trend Bible

Tuesday, October 1, 2pm to 3pm: The Future of Retail: The impact of eCommerce and tech on the high street, featuring Andy Mulcahy, strategy and insight director, IMRG

Wednesday, October 2, 1.30pm to 2.40pm: SVOD and its impact on consumer behaviour featuring Sam Tuck, associate director.

Thursday, October 3, 10.45am to 11.15am: Social Shopping and the rise of In Experience Purchase with Nick Richardson, CEO, The Insights People

Of this year’s educational programme, IMRG’s Andy Mulcahy commented: “I’m excited to be showcasing the unique insight IMRG provides and talking to retailers about how to identify when buzz and hype evolve into genuine customer demand, easy-win improvements to a website that aren’t dependent on expensive new technologies and how to know which new tech to invest in.”

On top of this, visitors will find a raft of new initiatives, including exclusive group tours, in which retailers are invited to join a group tour of BLE’s new Gaming and eSports Activation led by co-creator PowerStation Studios, a VIP Matchmaking Service that helps retailers get in front of leading brands, and a Retail Mentoring Programme in which 68 buyers from 21 retailers are taking part. New delegates for 2019 include Moonpig, Amazon, Next and Cool Clobber.

Moonpig licensing executive, Vikki Connor, said: “The BLE retail mentoring programme helps nurture new talent within the industry and introduces them to a career they may not have had much knowledge about.

“I started licensing later in my career and it is an industry I wish I had known more about and got into earlier. I love the work and the people and find it very rewarding as a career.”

Anna Knight, BLE event director, added: “The number of retailer visitors attending BLE last year rose by an incredible 24 per cent and our investment to not only bring even more retailers to the show this year but increase the number of overseas retailers coming to London, continues in earnest.

“BLE is a big show with a lot of content. Retailers have told us that they value the screenings, meetings and knowledge sessions, but they find it difficult to squeeze everything in and still have time to walk the floor, so we have purposefully left 90 minutes between each screening, and made the Retail Trends sessions bite-sized.

“As a result, this new programme will help retailers cut through the noise and focus on what’s exactly right for them. The Trends Programme will deliver valuable and practical insight into consumer trends and forecasting, and the networking events will facilitate knowledge-sharing with peers.”

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of and ToyNews. Hutchins has worked his way up from Staff Writer to the position of Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both ToyNews and, and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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