I have a love/hate relationship with this time of year...so does my editorial team. Do I need to explain why? It's Licensing International Show time of year, and, naturally, the LICENSE team is being pitched on stories from every possible angle. Further, it's my job to decide what stories are "cover" worthy...anyone want to try on my shoes? In any event, this issue is where the coverage begins...new properties, new initiatives, newcomers, all can be found beginning. Kudos to LICENSE Managing Editor Lorri Freifeld, who has the arduous task of compiling our Licensing Show Preview. This year, Lorri was inundated with submissions from 249 companies—a record for our now-four-year-old Official Show Preview.
So, I was out and about at Bologna Children's Book Fair (in late March) and MIPTV, and sadly, I returned empty-handed in the way of new properties to watch. Many of the properties I chose last year now are moving full speed ahead with licensing and merchandising, either by the licensor itself or a licensing agent (Bernard, represented by Al Ovadia & Associates, is one such property). If I missed something not already reported on in our magazine at either trade show...please let me know, as maybe my radar wasn't working.
Couple of notes about the April issue that I left out of my editorial last month...1) Licensing agents were included in this year's list of Leading Licensors. If you are a licensing agent and would like to submit something to our team for next year, please do so. While guidelines for the list may change from year to year, we'd still love to hear from you. 2) And most important: You may have noticed a "real" licensing person gracing our cover last month (John Dumbacher of National Geographic). It was the first time in my tenure at LICENSE magazine that we have done such as a main cover image. I'd love to hear your thoughts on people on the cover versus properties on the cover. Feel free to e-mail me your opinion.
This month, we pay well-deserved homage to Warner Bros. Consumer Products Founder Dan Romanelli. The licensing industry really came out to applaud a man, who, over his 20-plus-year career, has spearheaded some of entertainment's leading licensing initiatives—from Looney Tunes to Batman and Harry Potter. A LICENSE exclusive special section takes a look at Romanelli's years at WBCP, and offers where this industry guru thinks the future of licensing lies and recommendations to his successor, Brad Globe.
Next month, we'll have more exclusive stories than our pens can write, and more international state-of-the-market coverage. And, you'll find out what (or who) I chose for the cover...
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