As Brand Licensing Europe opens its doors at ExCeL (20-22 September), PreschoolNews.net talks to some key brand owners about the current health of the licensed preschool sector, challenges, trends and the retail landscape.
“The preschool licensed sector continues to be very strong,” begins Melissa Goodrich, director brand management at WildBrain. “There’s lots of competition across the sector, however the brands that continue reinventing themselves to remain current while also remaining true to their brand values, will always thrive. There also continues to be more and more amazing licensees and manufacturers in the market, who bring so much brilliant innovation to the preschool space.”
WildBrain is just one of a number of brand owners enjoying success within the preschool sector. The company’s portfolio is a mix of the evergreen – step forward Teletubbies and In the Night Garden – and the new, with Chip & Potato (pictured above) gaining traction, with its diverse characters and charming visual style proving to be a hit with international audiences.
Both Teletubbies and In the Night Garden have been marking key anniversaries this year – 25 and 15 years respectively – with a host of activity taking place. For Teletubbies this included collaborating with Pride in London and lighting up the Empire State Building in their iconic colours. In the Night Garden, meanwhile, has embarked on a tour around the UK with its live stage show, which is set to continue into 2023.
Live experiences have also been a focus for Acamar Films, with the company launching Bing’s first themed hotel rooms earlier this year at CBeebies Land Hotel, Alton Towers Resort. Bing has also joined a third Gulliver’s Theme Park in the UK and returned to Showcase Cinemas throughout the summer for a new cinema experience. In the Benelux, a successful new theatre tour is going strong with further plans to expand in 2023.
For Hasbro, meanwhile, 2022 has been another huge growth year for one cheeky little pig.