We find out more about TSBA Group’s licensing manager.
Licensing Manager, TSBA Group
My route into the licensing industry went something like this…
I got a summer job at my first agency, Performance Brands, doing some data entry work while awaiting my first term at university. I was offered a full-time role at the end of that summer, so I decided to defer my place for a year and have not looked back since. This slightly unorthodox entry into the industry gave me a good grounding, as I eventually worked across all facets of the business including finance and approvals, but always had an eye on a sales or brand development role.
How long in the industry?
Seven years in total.
When I was growing up, I had no idea that ‘licensing’ was an industry, so I wanted to be…
A fireman. I found out I was colour blind aged seven which completely dashed these hopes, but licensing has proved to be a worthy alternative.
Biggest inspiration in the licensing industry?
It’s difficult to single out one person as I’ve had the luck of working under some fantastic managers in my time in the industry, so I would like to give a shout out to Jennifer Gould and Nicola Christopher from my time at Global Icons and then Oliver Stanton, Stephanie Freeman and Jo Edwards since I joined TSBA Group, all of whom have helped me immensely.
Best thing about your current role?
Working with iconic properties and globally renowned brands to deliver licences and collaborations that elevate intellectual property. I also love the freedom of working across category.
What are you most proud of within your licensing career to date?
Nothing will match the excitement of the first time I saw a licensed product from a project I had initiated on-shelf. I still feel a sense of pride whenever this happens!
Licensed character you can most identify with (and why)?
Pikachu. He is very cute.
What were your first thoughts when you were revealed as a nominee for the Licensing International UK Rising Star Award?
It came as a massive surprise (a welcome one obviously!) as I wasn’t aware I had been put forward, so a big thank you to team TSBA for that.
Biggest lesson that you’ve learnt this year?
Collaboration is at the heart of this industry and this couldn’t have been demonstrated more than over the past year. Working with our brands, the licensees and retailers, I’ve had the privilege to sign and build long-term business that can grow incrementally once the uncertainty around COVID-19 has passed has been key.
The adage goes, once you enter the licensing industry, you never really leave… what are your short-term goals for your career in licensing?
In the very short term, I am working on a number of innovative co-branded initiatives for our brands that should be launching early next year, so watch this space!
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.