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News of the world: “2022 was a mix of challenges, new opportunities and surprises”

Plus Licens’ Eva Karlsson on expanding the agency’s European portfolio, NFT brands and anniversaries. takes a temperature check on the global licensing industry, asking licensors and agents based outside the UK to share their highs and lows of 2022, their strategies for a successful 2023, plus the words they’d use to describe business in the year just gone and the new one.

Today, we head to Sweden, with Eva Karlsson, commercial director, Plus Licens.

“2022 presented a mix of challenges, new business opportunities and surprises. The NFT-driven Bored of Directors was new to our portfolio and has been well received, as has our new licensee, Danish design company Boyhood, and their signature designed wooden Paul Frank figurines. Our two high-end UCLA collaborations with Highsnobiety and Mercer Amsterdam are keeping the brand relevant beyond the collegiate trends.

Going forward, we’re looking to expand our European portfolio with lifestyle, gaming, sports and additional NFT brands, and to recruit new licensee partners in all of Europe. We’ll be building up to the 50th anniversary of Hello Kitty in 2024, and supporting the growth of all our licensing programmes including within the competitive preschool segment, where we have some great properties like Bluey. Some highlights for 2023 are the 65th anniversary of Paddington, and a new Ghostbusters movie coming in December.

The general state of the economy impacts our own business, as well as our licensees’, with its shrinking margins. High volume/low price point products tend to grow during recessions, and new opportunities include print-on-demand solutions and local production, driven by shorter lead times.

I’d sum up 2022 as challenging. My word for 2023 is inventiveness.”

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

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