The head of international consumer products at Dreamworks has told Licensing.biz, that, while the licensing industry is not recession proof, she sees a number of strong opportunities out there, but the business needs to evolve to cope.
Sheila Clark said that Dreamworks was fortunate to be a part of the entertainment sector, as the movie business traditionally thrives during a recession. Retailers are using character brands to differentiate and compete in the difficult economy.
"The licensing industry is not recession proof, however, if you have something that consumers want, they will buy it," Clark stated.
"As an industry, we must evolve to generate new business opportunities; the traditional licensee/licensor business relationship has changed. We seek best-in-class partners to collaborate with retail and are more adept at creating innovative merchandise and promotion campaigns. Strong IP is the foundation to a successful licensing program, and truly understanding the brand attributes is critical to a licensing program's success."
The last 12 months have been phenomenal for Dreamworks Animation, Clark continued. The firm built on its portfolio of franchise properties with the launch of Shrek the Musical on Broadway and Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, as well as animated TV series Penguins of Madagascar.
Kung Fu Panda, of course, was another major hit, while most recently it launched Monsters vs Aliens to much acclaim.
At Licensing International, visitors to the Dreamworks booth can expect a sneak peek at its 2010 and 2011 line-up. This will include the next theatrical installments of Shrek, Madagascar and Kung Fu Panda, plus a new TV series for the latter, which is due to launch in Q3 2010, in partnership with Nickelodeon.
How to Train Your Dragon and Oobermind will also be highlighted.