Visitors up for day one says brand director Anna Knight; key changes revealed for 2018.
Brand Licensing Europe got off to a strong start yesterday, with brand director Anna Knight telling The Source that visitor numbers were up for day one.
And Anna also confirmed some key changes to the showfloor design for 2018, with the National Hall (on the ground floor) coming into play.
Anna commented: “Look around, look at how busy it is. I can tell you factually numbers are up for day one and, based on pre-reg forecasts, I would say we will be comfortably up by the end of day three.”
The popular Matchmaking service had 2,950 meetings confirmed across the three days, in comparison to 1,700 last year.
“That in itself is an amazing statistic,” Anna continued. “Also, ASOS, Ann Summers, Missguided and Robert Dyas are all actively requesting meetings, which is really good to see, and some of the European retailers are starting to take it on as well which is great.”
The main aisle once again hosted the annual Character Parade at 11am, with 76 characters taking part this year. Both the Licensing Academy and the Brands & Lifestyle Theatre were also busy across all the featured seminars.
Looking ahead to 2018, Anna told The Source about some key changes to further strengthen the show.
“The Brands and Lifestyle area will be in the National Hall in 2018,” she said. “We are actually going to be launching a competition to design the entrance to Brands & Lifestyle – I think it’s a really good way, hopefully, of getting the industry to actually think about how they want to be represented.
“We also really want to look after Art and Design and see it back to where it used to be. It was interesting to see in the LIMA report that retail sales for art and design are actually starting to grow again, which is very positive. So Art and Design will also be part of the National Hall, creating a brand new zone.
Anna continued: “What I want to feel is that it’s one cohesive show, still with each zone having it’s own feel and it’s own particular type of space for exhibitors, but part of one overall show.”
With two days still to go, Anna is also keen to receive feedback from both exhibitors and visitors on how UBM can further improve the event.
She said: “For me, I’d like them to think that we’ve listened; that we want to work with our exhibitors. This isn’t the UBM show, this is their show and our visitors show and we’re all about partnership and collaboration. We want to know what we can do to improve, we’ll listen to feedback and we’ll do the best we can to make this the best it can be.”