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‘Licensing industry can help drive the Black Lives Matter movement forward’

“We are in the great position to be able to send messages through our expertise” says London Entertainment Inc’s Saphia Maxamed.

The licensing industry is being encouraged to take steps to help drive forward the Black Lives Matter message.

Saphia Maxamed, founder of agency London Entertainment Inc, is taking the lead on calling for the industry to open up the conversation on racial equality and start collectively making positive changes.

“Brands have the power to change things,” Saphia told LicensingSource.net. “This is the chance to open up conversations which the industry – which I love for its embracing and collaborative nature – can tackle together. We are the pioneers of consumer products and, therefore, we are in a great position to send messages through our expertise.”

Saphia is looking to coordinate a collective effort for all areas of the industry to have a platform to support the movement and help to implement change.

Encouraging dialogue has been started with licensees, while industry charity The Light Fund has also been approached to help provide a means for companies to place donations for specific Black Lives Matter projects.
Bioworld International is actively talking to retailers about the potential, while LEI itself is in talks with black celebrity ambassadors including stars from Love Island and The Circle, plus grime artists and black actors.

Saphia is also keen for retailers to support the movement by stocking Black Lives Matter lines from licensees.

“The licensing industry embraced me and I really believe that it has the power to educate and inform,” Saphia continued. “We can help change things in small ways – by talking to people in your organisation about their experiences, recruiting from the community, supporting brands that are putting the Black Lives Matter message out there, introducing a black character to your content, a character with an accent, so that children from black communities can relate to them. If you make health and beauty products, introducing just one line for black people to be inclusive.

“Let’s educate ourselves and each other; it’s okay to feel uncomfortable, addressing it is the key thing. We have a massive opportunity here to move things on.”

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