Licensing Industry Revenue Rises for Second Consecutive Year

Entertainment, trademarks/brands, fashion and sports merchandise continue to drive royalties

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The International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association (LIMA), the primary trade organization for the worldwide licensing industry, recently released its latest industry survey.

The report, which was released today at Licensing Expo in Las Vegas, the industry’s largest annual event, showed that for the second consecutive year, sales of licensed products climbed, continuing an upward rebound of 5% since 2011.

The survey, which was conducted by researchers at the Yale School of Management, shows that trademark owners (such as entertainment studios, sports leagues, fashion houses, corporate brand owners and others), generated $5.454 billion in royalties in 2012, a gain of 2.5% over 2011, for an estimated retail value of $112.1 billion.

The report also goes on to report growth in nearly every licensing category, with the main revenue drivers being entertainment, trademark/brands, fashion and sports merchandise. These four areas represented 94% of all licensed revenues in the last year.

“Our 2013 Licensing Industry Survey shows there is a lot to be optimistic about for retailers and companies of all sizes that are leveraging the power of licensing to drive product sales,” said LIMA President Charles Riotto. “These latest findings clearly show that licensing is a positive and effective tool across virtually every category of goods.”

Some highlights from LIMA’s 2013 Licensing Industry Survey:

  • Character-related merchandise – The largest classification, encompassing Entertainment, TV, Movie and Celebrity licensing, and biggest sales generator in 2012, this category accounted for $2.55 billion in royalties and an estimated $49.3 billion in retail sales, up 2.8% from the previous year.
  • Corporate brands – The second largest category in the report and the one associated with major corporate brands and trademarks, collected $928 million in royalties in 2012, up 2%, and an estimated $21.6 billion at retail.
  • Fashion – Royalty revenues for Fashion licensing, which includes branded goods of noted designers, increased 3.4% last year to $755 million, translating into estimated retail sales of $16.5 billion.
  • Sports – Major league sports, including leagues and individuals, “scored” a 2.2% increase in licensing revenues, to $685 million in royalties, for an estimated $12.6 billion at retail.
  • Art – Licensing revenues for Art properties increased 1.5% last year to $134 million in royalties, translating into an estimated $3.9 billion at retail.
  • Collegiate – Royalties for college trademarks advanced 1.5% to $206 million in 2012 for approximately $3.8 billion in retail sales.

LIMA’s 2013 Licensing Industry Report is available free to LIMA members and $295 for non-members. It can be ordered at www.licensing.org.

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