Licensing Expo Virtual details ‘most robust educational agenda to date’ ahead of next month’s online event

Retail education, sustainability clinics, and a keynote from senior executives from Warner Bros. Consumer Products make up just a fraction of the agenda for this year’s Licensing Expo Virtual, taking place August 24th to 26th in an online format.

Celebrating 40 years… yes, 40, of connecting IP owners with retailers, manufacturers, and licensees, Licensing Expo Virtual will feature what it has billed as ‘the most robust educational agenda to date.’ What’s more, visitor registration for the event next month is free of charge.

This year’s event features the return of Licensing U, produced by Licensing International, the US market debut of License This!, and an opening keynote address from senior executives at Warner Bros. Consumer Products, plus the launch of Digital Brand Roadshows, Retail Clinics, Sustainability Clinics produced in partnership with Products of Change.

“We are so excited to reveal this year’s agenda as we tailor-made each offering to mirror the industry’s most pressing and ever-changing needs,” said Anna Knight, vice president of Licensing, Informa Markets.

“As a result of extensive conversations with our exhibitor and attendee community, we have devised the strongest agenda to date that is geared toward inciting collaboration, drawing hundreds of IP to the forefront, and addressing the challenges our attendee-base faces daily.”

The agenda will split into live and on-demand content and include:

LIVE SESSIONS

Digital Brand Roadshows: New to Licensing Expo, the Digital Brand Roadshows aim to highlight compelling brands and IP through an exciting collection of exhibitor case studies linked via a common theme, spotlighted in panel conversations broadcast live at the event. Categories for the 2021 event include:

  • Collaborations and Partnerships
  • New Exhibitors to the Event
  • Heritage and Nostalgia
  • The Live Experience
  • Animation and Anime
  • Licensing Around the World

Sustainability Clinics: Also new to the 2021 agenda are the Sustainability Clinics made possible by partner Products of Change, a global educational hub to drive sustainable change across consumer product markets and beyond. Attendees have the opportunity to participate in 30-minute clinics with experts from Products of Change to garner personalized advice on how to improve their current approach and gain a deeper understanding of what other players are doing in the licensing industry.

Retail Education & Ask Me Anything Sessions: Licensing Expo Virtual will offer Retail Clinics comprised of tailored educational sessions provided free of charge for all retailers. “Our intention with Retail Clinics is to ease the challenge of keeping up with and understanding key trends, helping retailers meet a range of licensing experts and gain the inspiration required to introduce licensing into retailer’s strategy,” commented Knight. Education sessions will include:

  • On-demand: Sessions on future trends, category-specific brand licensing case studies, and licensing 101 for retailers.
  • Live Broadcast: Ask Me Anything sessions where a panel of brand licensing experts will be on hand to answer any questions you have about brand licensing and retail. Questions can be submitted live or in advance and can remain anonymous.

Keynote Address: Senior executives from Warner Bros. Consumer Products will deliver the opening keynote address entitled “Unlocking the Fan Power of Global Franchises,” moderated by License Global magazine’s content director Amanda Cioletti. To tune into the address on August 24 at 11:00 a.m. EDT/8:00 a.m. PDT presented by Pam Lifford, president, global brands and experiences, WarnerMedia, and Robert Oberschelp, senior vice president, global franchise management and brand product, Warner Bros. Consumer Products.

License This! Finale: On Day 2 of the event, attendees can be a part of the License This! competition finale, a global initiative produced in partnership with Licensing International and InventHelp that provides select illustrators, designers, animators, and product inventors, the exciting opportunity to pitch their concepts online in front of a panel of expert judges.

ON-DEMAND SESSIONS

GLG Educational Content: Attendees can enjoy on-demand content produced by License Global, which will go live two weeks before the event and spotlight various industry categories, including:

  • Changing the Channel: The Evolution of Kids’ Content
  • Ordering Up: How F&B is Feeding Limited Edition Drops
  • Untapped Potential: How Mobile Gaming is Gearing Up for Big Change
  • Collectibles – Who’s Collecting What Now?
  • WTF is an NFT???!!

Licensing U: A Licensing Expo staple produced by Licensing International, Licensing U supports brand licensing newcomers and those interested in honing their expertise. This year’s educational offering will span three tracks:

  1. Basics, offering an essential introduction to how the licensing industry works
  2. Spotlights, providing insight into the latest topics and trends in key segments
  3. Tactics and Strategies, offering insight into the topics and trends impacting the brand licensing industry

A selection of Basics sessions includes:

  • Basics of International Licensing: A licensing program that operates in more than one country requires a specific set of considerations that can involve such aspects as financial, regulatory, and legal systems, cultural considerations, retail structures, and many others.
  • What You Need to Know About Royalty Rates: Find out how royalty rates are determined, what brand owners and licensees need to be thinking about when they’re being discussed, as well as the implications of the array of structures under which they’re calculated.
  • Developing a Retail Plan: A key element of any licensing effort to create a strategy for getting products to (and through) retail. Attendees will gain perspectives on how to understand the differences among various kinds of retailers, figure out their hot buttons, and match property or product lines to the appropriate targets.

A selection of Tactics and Strategies sessions includes:

  • The Future of NFTs: It might be the hottest topic in the business, with implications for corporate brands, sports, entertainment, celebrities, art – literally every category in licensing. What’s the state of the business, and where is it all headed? Experts will provide perspective.
  • Sustainability Strategies: Environmental responsibility is on the minds of an ever-growing number of consumers. Manufacturers and brand owners in all product categories need to address those concerns—a look at the latest thinking on sustainable sourcing and other topics.
  • Confronting Supply Chain Challenges: The pandemic didn’t just disrupt consumer behavior; it also sparked a significant disruption in manufacturing, shipping, and all aspects of getting new products to market in a cost-effective and timely way. How have things changed, and what’s the outlook for the future?

Attendees can secure their Licensing U Pass from just $88 for one track or $156 for the All-Access Pass by booking before July 23 to take advantage of the 20 per cent Early Bird discount. Licensing International members benefit from an additional 10 per cent discount.

For a full download of the 2021 Licensing Expo Virtual agenda, visit here. All sessions will remain available on-demand for three months after the live event ends.

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of Licensing.biz 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 Licensing.biz, and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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