Licensing Link Europe at BLE: unique brands, unique opportunities

What do street style, a world-renowned artist, a lovable rabbit, an animated treasure hunt, a globally celebrated road trip, a science blog and a celebration of football have in common?

They’ve all inspired exciting and unique brands – all of which are represented by extension and strategy agency Licensing Link Europe.

Stand A302 is the place to be to find out more about Chic & Love, Van Gogh Museum, Molang, Pirata & Capitano, North Coast 500, IFL Science and Football’s Coming Home 1848.

Chic & Love is a new fashion and lifestyle brand originating from Spain, aiming to promote style and self-confidence among young adult consumers. What makes Chic & Love stand out from the crowd is its close relationship and association with Swarovski, with which the brand is an official partner.

Chic & Love is well established in the Iberian market, with a number of product categories distributed in mid-tier department stores. In the UK, meanwhile, Posh Paws has signed as exclusive licensee for the global plush category, launching a beautiful range of gorgeous keepsakes and collectibles that include the iconic Swarovski crystals (and carry their Certificate of Excellence stamp of approval). In addition, Corsair will be introducing fragrances and make-up gift sets in 2020. Offering affordable luxury that’s bang on trend, Chic & Love looks set for a healthy 2020 and beyond.

Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum, founded in 1973, welcomes more than 2 million visitors from all over the world each year. The museum houses the world’s largest collection of Vincent van Gogh’s paintings, drawings, sketches and letters. During the last twelve months the Van Gogh Museum has collaborated with a number of leading global brands, including Vans, Samsonite, BN International and Beddinghouse, to deliver fashion-oriented lifestyle apparel, footwear, accessories and luggage. 

In addition two Meet Vincent van Gogh Experiences launched successfully this year in Korea and Spain, with plans to tour across other European countries during 2020 and beyond. 

In the UK, the licensing programme has secured partners for casualwear, with products launched this year in ASOS. Further licensing announcements across key categories are expected shortly. 

Molang, from Millimages, a European leader in the children’s entertainment industry, is a cuddly, funny, kind-hearted, kawaii-inspired rabbit whose animated series is a massive TV and online hit. Three seasons have already been delivered and a fourth is on the way, while a strong social media following boasts over 5 billion uses on alone in under 12 months, together with a big YouTube presence and more than one million Facebook followers. In addition, Molang recently celebrated the renewal by Tomy of its European master toy line, not to mention reaching 25 European licensees in all core categories, including toy, stationery and apparel.

The toy renewal follows the very successful launch of Molang on Tiny Pop, the free-to-air UK television channel where it sits inside the top 10 shows. Season three is due on Tiny Pop in September. September will also see the launch of seasons one and two of the show on Amazon Prime in the UK, Germany, France and Italy. In addition Kika in Germany has acquired all four seasons starting autumn this year, and Clan premieres in Spain in late 2019. Most European territories are on board for season four. 

Also from Millimages, Pirata & Capitano is a preschool animation show following the crew of the ship The Pink Skull as they continue their never-ending quest for treasure across the islands of the Great Sea. With season two currently in production for delivery mid 2020, this will bring the total number of episodes to 104 x 11’ min, complimented by additional bespoke short-form episodes that form the backbone of the digital strategy. The programme, co-produced by France 5 Television and Rai of Italy, has enjoyed strong take-up globally, with new broadcast partners including Discovery in the US, CJ Tooniverse in Korea, Azteca in LatAm and most recently CCTV for China, all coming on board mid-2019.

In the UK, the programme quickly became the Number 2 most-watched show on the channel. Nickelodeon Junior will also be premiering in late 2019. This delightful show offers a wide range of possibilities for licensing partnerships, notably in toys, back-to-school, apparel and publishing. 

The recent news that Licensing Link Europe had been appointed to manage the global licensing for North Coast 500 underlined the agency’s reputation for spotting unconventional but very attractive brand opportunities. Since 2015, when just over 500 miles of stunning coastal scenery were documented and marketed as a road trip under the name North Coast 500 (NC500), this Highlands coastal touring route has become a global phenomenon, building an audience reach of over 8 billion from around the globe. A new style guide, launched in the weeks preceding BLE, will highlight the amazing opportunities this route offers to both licensees who have already registered interest and new licensees visiting BLE. 

IFL Science (‘I f****** love science’), began life as a Facebook page, started by founder Elise Andrew in March 2012 to share her passion for science and making science accessible to everyone. IFLScience is today the number one science platform, with a mix of science and irreverence that has gained it a global reach across its different channels of more than 120 million people. This highly distinctive Licensing Link representation has already inspired a series of IFL Science-branded gift books publishing early next year from Ice House Books. Half Moon Bay is the gifting partner and will shortly be launching an innovative range of giftware, including stationery and kitchenware.  Another recent agreement has been reached with BioWorld International as the brand’s apparel partner, launching a range of tee shirts, sweatshirts and accessories for the UK and European markets.

Football’s Coming Home is a brand uniquely placed for tournament football as the nation comes together with renewed vigour, following the successes of both the men’s and the women’s national teams at the last respective World Cups of 2018 and 2019. One thing that can be guaranteed as we head into late May and early June of 2020 is that the words “Football’s Coming Home” will once again ring out throughout England as the nation hopes and passionately craves for European football glory. 

Apparel categories have been signed by Fashion UK / Global Licensing and a Helles-style lager beer from Robinson’s Brewery is ready to go in celebration for what might just be…

Chris Taday, Director of Licensing Link Europe, says: “We like to believe that we have a reputation for offering major licensing opportunities in both expected and unexpected areas, and our success with campaigns for everything from children’s animation and fashion to science blogs and coastal routes certainly proves it. Come to stand A302 and we’ll tell you more!”


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