Hong Kong Focuses on Brand Value and Protection

The Hong Kong International Licensing Show, which was held Jan. 6-8, concurrent with Hong Kong Toys & Games Fair, featured more than 200 exhibitors and 600 licensed brands, according to fair organizer the Hong Kong Trade and Development Council.

Exhibitors at the Hong Kong Licensing Show ranged from many homegrown Asian character properties and brands to pan-Asian agents representing global intellectual properties and entertainment brands.

One of the highlights of the show was the Asian Licensing Conference, which attracted more than 1,000 attendees that came to learn more about the explosive growth of licensing in Asia. Two topics of particular interest included how to assess branded value and how to protect IP.

In a seminar sponsored by License! Global, Yvonne Chua, president, Licensing Executives Society International, explained how brand protection is essential for licensors and licensees, but that laws and regulations vary in different countries and regions. Of particular interest to the audience, according to seminar moderator Steven Ekstract, group publisher, License! Global, were some case studies Chua presented about Western brands' legal battles to be proactive in protecting their trademarks in mainland China.

Jonathan So, founding chairman of the Asian Animation-Comic Culture & Creative Association, gave an overview of how he is able to assess brand value and protect intellectual property having developed some of the most beloved children's animation for the Chinese marketplace.

The audience was also treated to a presentation by Simon Ho, group marketing and licensing director, OMQ Media Co. Ho discussed the beloved OMQ comics that children in Hong Kong have grown up with since 1962.

LIMA also announced the winners of its Asian Licensing Awards Jan. 6 at an opening night award ceremony during the Hong Kong International Licensing Show. Winners include:

  • Best Asian Property of the Year: Winsing Company–GG Bond
  • Best Corporate Brand and Lifestyle Program of the Year: Saban Brands–Paul Frank
  • Best Entertainment Property of the Year: The Walt Disney Company (Shanghai)–Iron Man 3
  • Best Licensed Promotion of the Year: China Xintiandi (a Shui On company)–100 Doraemon Secret Gadgets Expo
  • Best Licensee of the Year: Shanghai Romma Apparel–Paul Frank
  • Best Licensing Agency of the Year: PPW Sports & Entertainment (Hong Kong)–Angry Birds

Additionally, the Asian Licensing Association hosted its annual Asian Licensing Awards event Jan. 7 during the Hong Kong Toys & Games Fair. The winners include:

  • Best Property in Asia: Doraemon and Fujiko Pro
  • Best Asian Property: Rilakkuma and San-X
  • Best Licensee (tie): SpongeBob SquarePants tissue products from Vinda International and the Iron Man 3 collectible figure series from Hot Toys
  • Best Licensing Agent: Pacific Licensing Studio representing Warner Bros. Consumer Products
  • Best Promotion Campaign: Monsters University and Toy Story loyalty program by The Dairy Farm Company for 7-Eleven
  • Best Young Property: Attack on Titan and Kodansha.

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