LICENSING.BIZ PEOPLE AWARDS 2016: Licensing Agent of the Year

Ahead of the much-anticipated People Awards 2016, we have launched a week of round ups, taking a closer look at the big names running for a People Award on Friday, March 11th.

Today, we profile all the finalists running for a Licensing Agent of the Year award.


Widely respected throughout the industry, the CPLG team comprises a unique mix of individuals from a variety of backgrounds, bringing experience working with retailers, licensees, licensors and promotional agencies.

The past year has seen this team work with some high profile brands including Minions, Sesame Street, England Rugby, Care Bears, Jurassic World and Teletubbies, providing a personal service to each and every licensor, licensee and retailer in the course of doing so.

“CPLG supports the licensing community at every opportunity, ensuring they are present at all key events, both professional and social,” said one nominating party.

“They enthusiastically support all Light Fund events, quiz nights, treasure hunts. Passionate, trusting, engaging and like a family, are just some of the ways to describe the entire team.”

Start Licensing

Headed up by one of the industry’s best-loved personalities, Start Licensing has gone from strength to strength with licensing revenues up year on year – and who would ‘t love the team that brought Jammie Dodgers to the licensing world?

Ian Downes and the team has seen recent success with new licenses such as Britvic, Brand of Brothers for J20 and Tango Ice cream, Yumsh Snacks for Tango popcorn and more, as well as Flower Fairies, Spot, Asterix, Rachel Hale and of course British institution, The Beano.

Downes is an active member of the licensing community, a regular of every Light Fund event and a mentor to many.

Bulldog Licensing

Bulldog Licensing has had an incedible 12 months, gorwing its headcount by more than 30 per cent, continuing to expand on its passion for a ‘retail first’ approach to licensing and culminating in a portfolio that now boasts one of the hottest girls’ brands in the UK, Shopkins.

With Yo-Kai Watch, Angry Birds and DreamWorks Animation under its wings, too, Bulldog looks set to do it all again this year.

“Bulldog Licensing is ten years young next year, and the company has come a long way since its founder Rob Corney started it in his dining room all those years ago,” read one entry.

“Rob is a leader with the industry and prides himself on being an honest and upfront business partner.

“Bulldog is the most active agent in the UK when it comes to retail engagement, in some cases helping to open new trading accounts with retailers and always looking to build in-store promotional support.”

Rocket Licensing

With a small and dynamic team, Rocket Licensing have shown that they can take on major league brands and the agent recently signed as the UK rep for Sony Pictures’ Ghostbusters which looks set to be one of the most anticipated movie releases this summer.

The agent continues to carve a place at retail for JLG’s cherished preschool publishing property The Very Hungry Caterpillar and should also be commended for spotting the immense potential of UK comedy favourite: Mrs Brown’s Boys.

The Point 1888

Despite being only 18 months old, The Point 1888 has achieved some ‘truly phenomenal’ feats, read on entry. All with the simple aim of ‘modernising the licensing industry.’

The Point 1888 have reversed the typical licensing agency model and become the first true retail focused brand extension company. This model has proved vital to the firm securing a market leading portfolio of brands

Their first launch was with Innocent Smoothies and Oliver Bonas, where The Point put the two companies together to extend Innocent’s ‘Little Hats’ into ‘Bigger Hats’.

This year will also see another ‘Masterpiece’ DTR launch into Britain’s favorite retailer, two gifting deals with Montezuma’s Chocolate & Cereal Killer Café and a health & beauty product that is going to change bath time forever.

The Point 1888 are also great supporters of charity, donating 11 per cent of their profits from each extension to a charity that has an emotional connection to the range.


IMG is a leader in sports, events, media and fashion and represents some of the most well-known icons in the sporting and fashion industry.

Already this year, the company has renewed its licensing agreement with Sergio Tachini and will represent the Italian sportswear brand on an international basis.

Other notable over the past 12 months has seen IMG develop The Laughing Cow into apparel, games and publishing and bring the Ministry of Defence’s licensee line-up to over 28 partners across the Royal Navy, British Army and the Royal Air Force.

Brands with Influence

Brands with Influence has had an exciting year, growing its portfolio of clients as well as the range and depth of its licensed products in retail.

Just some of the highlights of the past 12 months for Brands with Influence include a partnership with BBC Natural History Productions to represent staples of BBC television, Springwatch and Countryfile, as well as BBC Childrens to represent Swashbuckle on CBeebies and Hacker T Dog for CBBC.

In the world of independent production companies, meanwhile, Brands with Influence is no small fry either, representing the worldwide licensed merchandise rights for The Next Step (Temple St Productions for CBBC), Nelly and Nora (Geronimo Productions for CBeebies), Woolly and Tig (Tattiemoon for CBeebies.

The team also represents the RSPB and the RNLI and has worked hard to developthe Humble brand with Kate Humble and launched her branded bath and beauty range to Waitrose.

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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