Trends and Regional Know-How

Licensed Gadgets and Gizmos

Grani and Partners (part of the Giochi Preziosi Group) will offer its comprehensive range of licensed promotional items and gadgets and aims to meet companies from all product sectors to collaborate on licensed promotions. Its expertise is also in its speed to market. As Grani’s Eleonora Gardosi says, “For each brand or character we develop lots of products so that when we meet a licensee we probably have an appropriate and approved gadget ready to go.”

The Jast Company, founded in 1995, specialises in patented musical products including musical gift boxes, greeting cards, notebooks, pens, mugs and gift bags. JAST’s Managing Director, Steve Chen, tells License! Global, “We would like to talk to potential partners about applying characters and character noises to these patented sound products.” The products feature activation mechanisms – in other words you can turn the music or sound on and off by, for example, opening and closing a box lid.

Animal Crackers

Central and Eastern European consumers clearly have the same appetite for cute animal imagery as English speaking markets do. Allsorts Licensing will present its Yoga Cats and Dogs brand, which already has licensees in the region for calendars, greeting cards, posters, giftware and gift books.

4Sight Licensing Solutions’ animal brand, The Dog (together with The Cat, Pig, Hamster, Rabbit and Duck), are well known across the region in the promotions sphere. 4Sight will be looking for other licensees for the brand.

It’s Happy Bunny

Cop Corp is in Budapest with three brands that are already making a big impression across the region. Expect more news about Pink Cookie, Barcode Kitties and It’s Happy Bunny  during the course of the show. One of these is a slogan-based brand, Jim Benton’s It’s Happy Bunny. So how do you extend a brand resting on written humour into a region with so many different languages?

CopCorp Licensing president, Carole Postal, tells License! Global, “I am pleased but not surprised with how quickly the It’s Happy Bunny brand has been embraced in Eastern Europe. It’s Happy Bunny works because young people are the same everywhere you go. They love to laugh and they find it funny when someone so cute says such outrageous things. It’s Happy Bunny says things that maybe they are thinking but are too polite to say themselves.”

She goes on to explain that when Poland’s Funnyland or licensees in Russia like Premiera or ZAO Otkrytoye Pismo Center want to translate It’s Happy Bunny into their own language, CopCorp relies on its local agent, Plus Licens, to ensure the final results are appropriate for the market and true to the brand. Plus Licens brand manager Petra Sedlinger says, “With It’s Happy Bunny, the important thing in translating is to focus on the bunny’s general attitude rather than specific words. The key is to make sure the overall message and humour comes across.”

A number of Eastern European licensees choose to use Benton’s original, untranslated art and text, include Poland’s B&S Polska and Top-2000; Romania’s Pigna Romania; and Czech Republic’s Karton P+P.

Stationery and Publishing

You can expect the stationery and publishing categories to shine at BLC&EE. The categories are strong across the region and well served by licensed brands. The Star Wars programme, for example, which is managed by Plus Licensing, boasts 15 distinct publishing deals as well as stationery licensees in each major territory. Amongst the many brands and products in these categories Allsorts will show its Graffiti brand, Sprayground, which is launching on bags and stationery for back to school.

Go back to Brand Licensing C&EE Preview.

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