BLE 2010: Animaru wins License This: The Next Big Thing

Japanese inspired graphic design voted new property with most licensing potential by panel.
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Animaru, a graphic design property with a Japanese influence from UK artist Sophie Hinton, has won the final of License This: The Next Big Thing at Brand Licensing Europe.

Top prize in the competition - which saw Animaru go up against animated pre-school series Gombby, boys action animation Bondiband, and web-based concept Made in Me - was a fully furnished stand at next year's show.

"I can't believe we won," said Sophie Hinton. "I watched the other three finalists present and they were so brilliant, I was convinced we could not win. In the end, we are a brother-sister team from Norfolk, working on a shoestring. I can't wait to see what we can do with the brand over the next year, leading up to our first time as an exhibitor."

Helen McAleer, MD of Walker Books and chair of the judging panel, added: "This was an unbelievably difficult decision to make, as the judging panel were in agreement that all four finalists have a great chance of succeeding commercially in what is a very tough market.

"We chose Animaru for its modern, relevant appeal and we could easily see the licensing opportunities, from toys to apparel to collectables."

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