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Licensing International UK Rising Star 2020 Nominees: Anna McArdle

We find out more about WildBrain CPLG’s new brand manager.

Anna McArdle,

Brand Manager at Wildbrain CPLG (previously Licensing Executive at Historic Royal Palaces)

My route into the licensing industry went something like this…

It started with a chance meeting with Andrew Lane (ceo of Fluid World).

How long in the industry?

Five years.

When I was growing up, I had no idea that ‘licensing’ was an industry, so I wanted to be…

A lawyer. I loved Legally Blonde and I did go on to get a law degree before finding licensing.

Biggest inspiration in the licensing industry?

Julie Keckwick, senior licensing manager at BBC Worldwide. I admire the depth of her experience, her hard work and determination. She’s also been very supportive of my career.

What are you most proud of within your licensing career to date?

I’m new to Wildbrain CPLG, but excited to be working on their diverse portfolio of international brands. At Historic Royal Palaces, I had a great time working on the Cole & Son licensed wallpaper range. All the designs were hand drawn and coloured by their London design team, so there was an extensive historical research, creative development and approval process that we worked really closely on… and the results are simply stunning.

Licensed character you can most identify with (and why)?

The snail from Julia Donaldson’s The Snail and the Whale… dreaming of the ocean and a round the world trip!

What were your first thoughts when you were revealed as a nominee for the Licensing International UK Rising Star Award?

It was a great surprise, a piece of good news when good news was thin on the ground!

Biggest lesson that you’ve learnt this year?

If not now, then when?

The adage goes, once you enter the licensing industry, you never really leave… what are your short-term goals for your career in licensing (say, the next two years)?

I’m excited to get stuck in to a new role, back to my agency roots and working with a portfolio of incredible brands. Who knows what the next two years holds? As long as I’m challenged and moving forwards, I’m happy.

The Licensing International UK Rising Star award will be presented as part of The Licensing Awards, which take place virtually on Wednesday December 16. The awards are free to attend – simply click on this link to register.

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