Last week’s annual Brand Licensing Europe event in London surpassed its goals with a record-breaking show. Now in its 18th year, BLE is Europe’s premiere licensing event, and is organized by UBM and sponsored by the International Licensing Merchandiser’s Association (LIMA).
The three-day 2016 event featured an all-new Matchmaking Service, which generated 200,000 online use profile views, with one user alone creating 1 million BPS of business. It also saw the launch of the Retail Licensing Club, which will bring retailers together for exclusive events throughout the year; and the announcement of Licensing Expo China.
Breaking down BLE by the numbers: The show featured over 250 exhibitors (63 new) and over 2,500 properties on display. Overall visitor attendance of more than 7,500 was a 5% increase over 2015 — plus a 13% increase in attendance from retailers. Attendees from 81 countries got otake in the biggest-ever parade of 80 characters. 2016 had the largest Retail Mentoring Programme to date with 50 participants, and over 1,700 meetings resulted from the inaugural Matchmaking Service.
In related news, this year’s License This! Competition final saw unlicensed property Let The Thoughts Be With You selected as the winner by a panel of senior licensing representatives from Marks & Spencer, The Natural History Museum, Nickelodeon and Jazwares. (See the other finalists here.)
BLE 2017 will be held October 10-12 at Olympia, London. See www.brandlicensing.eu for more information.