Keeping Editorial Engines Revving

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Welcome! It's a new year...and a new LICENSE. As promised, this issue serves as the official editorially redesigned and refocused LICENSE. It has all you've come to expect from the editorial team of LICENSE...and then some. So, what is this "some"? For the first time, LICENSE's editorial team is incredibly vocal, offering our opinions on the merchandising tactics that work(ed). Behind closed doors, LICENSE's editorial team mulled over what was, in our opinions, the Best of 2005. The result: 12 categories, 13 winners (one category resulted in a tie). Two of our winners grace this month's cover: Daisy Fuentes' direct-to-retail deal with Kohl's and Napoleon Dynamite's exclusive at Hot Topic. For a glimpse at this year's winners, turn to p. 24. Although it wasn't included in our Best of 2005... feature (as press time was middle of December), I'd also like to salute a promotion that caught my eye during holiday shopping: Memoirs of a Geisha shopping bags complete with ribbons, and an exotic beauty collection at Bath & Body Works. Hats off to Sony Consumer Products.

There's a lot of newness at LICENSE, and although I've outlined it once before, I'd like to do so again.

Biz Briefs: Our previous Insider news format with the addition of Who's News, Events Calendar, and highlights of our weekly e-newsfeed. Chart Buster: The latest statistics from our partners at The NPD Group. Consumer View: A look at demographics and ethnicities from partners such as Packaged Facts. Channel Surfing: Retail analysts weigh in on some of the industry's leading retailers, new formats, and independents. Globetrotting: International Editor Bob Jenkins takes us to a variety of countries around the globe. Spotlight: Our previous Close-Up in a Q&A format with take-away boxes for ease. Granted & Available: A top 10 list of Licenses Recently Granted and Now Available, and why they were chosen. Licensology: A how-to column written by industry experts. Tech Talk: The latest news and information on the age of technology and its effects on the licensing business. Scene & Heard: Photos of people, places, and trade show events.

In addition to these monthly columns, LICENSE will still bring you previews and reviews of trade shows, monthly features on all of the consumer product categories we've always covered (art, brands and trademarks, character, entertainment, fashion, interactive, publishing, and sports), and timely news features.

I, of course, want to hear from you, as your comments, suggestions, ideas, and opinions keep our editorial engines revving. Contact me at 212.951.6707, or e-mail: jcooney@advanstar.com. Enjoy!

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