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Ready. Set. Vegas: A look ahead to Licensing Expo 2023

We highlight just some of the companies exhibiting at next week’s show – across all categories – as well as getting the lowdown from Anna Knight, svp licensing at Informa Markets.

The average temperature in Las Vegas in June tends to hit 40 degrees – hot by anyone’s standards, but the team at Informa Markets has been working hard to ensure that Licensing Expo (13-15 June) also turns up the heat for exhibitors and visitors.

Some 300 exhibitors are heading to the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, with more than 70 companies exhibiting for the first time. There are companies exhibiting from over 20 countries originating from Asia, Europe, North America and South America. Notably, this will be the first truly international in-person Expo since 2019 because – thanks to restrictions being dropped in Asia – the show is once more welcoming exhibitors from South Korea, Japan, China and Taiwan.

And the exhibitors will certainly be well supported, as Anna Knight, svp licensing at Informa Markets, explains: “We’ve upgraded the meetings and matchmaking platform and allocated even more concierge resource to help exhibitors. Onsite, every exhibitor has a point of contact who will look after them, too.

“We’ve upgraded scanning technology, so it’s easier for exhibitors to scan attendee badges and upload the information into a platform where it can be easily downloaded for follow ups post-show. We also promote our exhibitors and tell their stories to our visitor audiences as much as possible and profile as many of our new exhibitors as possible. It’s important to us that we look after the smaller and newer exhibitors because we know that Expo is a big event and can be overwhelming for them.”

You can check out the dedicated Licensing Expo exhibitor preview in the summer edition of Licensing Source Book by clicking here.

The team is also introducing two new features to help people who are new to the show. Orientation sessions will take place on the first and second day to help visitors understand how to make the most of the show, while round table sessions will give people the opportunity to meet the experts, whether they’re looking for information on agents, or how to do business in a particular international territory for example.

And then, of course, there is the fashion theme. There are two fashion keynotes – from shoe brand, Sam Edelman, plus Minecraft and Crocs. Anna continues: “To have so many keynotes of such high standard in one space is incredible. We’ve got the fashion showroom, too, which is slightly different to what you’ve already seen at BLE. It’s an area in the Brands and Agents space with 16 beautifully designed showrooms where brands will show off their fashion ranges. Confirmed showrooms are across entertainment and brand and I think our visitors will be really surprised by the depth of ranges on display by these brands.”

On top of all this, License This returns, while there are new Ignite the Brand pitches which will see some of the exhibiting brand owners pitching new and upcoming IPs. Away from the showfloor, the Licensing International Excellence Awards will take place at the HyperX Arena at The Luxor on Monday 12 June, while the Opening Night Party – complete with entertainment from Ja Rule – is on Tuesday 13 June at Daylight Beach Club.

It’s going to be a jam-packed week for many and Anna has one last piece of advice: “Finally – don’t forget to have fun and enjoy yourself!”

This feature originally appeared in the summer 2023 edition of Licensing Source Book. To read the full publication, click on this link.

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