Jiggy George opens the Indian licensing Expo in Mumbai

The 3rd edition of India Licensing Expo (ILE) 2019 – India’s largest brand licensing exhibition began on a rainy note at the Bombay Convention & Exhibition Centre, NESCO. However, this didn’t dampen the mood indoors, as the conference kicked off with Marty Brochstein from Licensing International lighting the traditional lamp.

The opening address was delivered by Ms. Ritu Marya, editor of Franchise India. Martin “Marty” Brochstein along with Jiggy George, Founder & CEO, Dream Theatre and Head, Licensing International, India delivered the opening keynote on The Future Trends In Brand Licensing & Building new Labels.

Marty took the stage first and spoke about some of the key global statistics and India’s place among its peers (#18 in 2018 – up 2 spots from #20 in 2017) with $1.59 billion sales in retail. He spoke about how these days many brands are digitally native, given the changing landscape fuelled by the technology disruption and all-pervasive nature of e-commerce. However, 76% of business is still done in brick & mortar stores. He then briefly touched upon the growing importance of “experiential licensing” riffing off Ms. Ritu Marya’s comment that “people have enough stuff they crave experiences” He also shared some examples of successful collaborations done by brands like Nike & Netflix (Stranger Things) and Vans and Warner Bros. (Harry Potter). He concluded his presentation by highlighting the importance of being more socially conscious especially if one wants to be relevant to the younger audience.

Marty was followed by Jiggy George Founder & CEO, Dream Theatre India Pvt Ltd., who shared his thoughts on licensing trends from an Indian & Asian context.

He echoed Marty’s sentiment that the future of licensing lay in ‘experiences’ and that brand owners should pay heed if they are to survive in this new-brand-a-day market.

These days when everyone is “looking down” instead of “looking up” Jiggy shone the spotlight on a few key trends/opportunities for the licensing fraternity to take note off.

The rise of digital brands like Youtubers – Ryan from Ryan’s Toy Review who has 19.8 million subscribers, ChuChu TV which has over 10 channels and 39 million subscribers, and influencers like Lilly Singh & Bhuvan Bham who are raking in the moolah by being topical and completely in sync with their followers. So is digital content the new brand opportunity? Are digital influencers the new celebrity? Jiggy then delved deeper into the discussion around building franchises that last like a Superman, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones and even homegrown IP like Singham which has managed to transform and re-invent itself its latest avatar being Little Singham!

With the ICC Cricket World Cup on, how could one not speak about the HUGE opportunity in sports. Not just cricket but even E-sports, which has spawned such franchises as Fortnite and PUBG. There are 250 million Fortnite users around the globe! The Marshmellow performance on Fortnite saw 10 million viewers, 300 million dollars were spent every month on Fortnite merchandise.

To round it off after sharing his thoughts on curated brand experiences like the Cartoon Network tie-up with Marriott and Cher’s collab with Sofitel, Jiggy flew around Asia to highlight some interesting examples of how some of their exports are influencing the youth in India like Pokémon (Japan), K-Pop & Hello Kitty (Korea) and more. He concluded by posing a challenge to Indian designers to create our own design aesthetic which will resonate with the world.

To cap off the day Jiggy won the Brand Licensing Leader Award (Agent) You can watch him get Jiggy with it

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The Dream Theatre team ended the night on a high winning 2 metals at the glitzy (& hilarious) awards show hosted by Siddharth Kanan.

The first one was for the Most Popular Animation Series on an OTT platform for CHUCHU TV.

The second was bagged by Jiggy George for Brand Licensing Leader – Agent

Jetting with Jiggy & team to the Las Vegas Expo!

For more than 35 years, Licensing Expo has connected the world’s most influential entertainment, character, art, and corporate brand owners and agents with consumer goods manufacturers, licensees and retailers. Whether you are looking to spot trends, build partnerships, or secure brand rights for your products, Licensing Expo has your answer.

This year Sush, Jibi and myself travelled to the mecca of licensing. Licensing Expo 2019 had all the studios and brands in all their glory . It was wonderful to catch up with friends , clients and colleagues from this wonderful industry. It was a special one for Dream Theatre as we partnered on Chu Chu TV with premier agency Brandgenuity in the USA and Canada . Brandgenuity sported Chu Chu TV in their booth and garnered two dozen odd meetings . Lots of interest for the brand in these markets and look out for this space for more information . It was also wonderful to see the iconic brands we represent – Pokemon , Angry birds, Smiley, Hello kitty have a big presence at the show !

Angry Birds Merchandise : Look the latest this summer

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Angry Birds, the mobile game of wingless birds and their battle against egg-stealing, grunting pigs has became an international phenomenon. Dream Theatre, owns the merchandising rights for this popular entertainment brand. It was only a matter of time before Angry Birds launched itself beyond the game, into new business areas like merchandising, publishing and media.
Dream Theatre’s aim was to extend the reach of Angry Birds in innovative ways, while still retaining the essence of the brand: fun, clever and almost addictively engaging. Dream Theatre identified 10 licensees, whose products were the perfect brand extensions for Angry Birds. For the Indian market, Dream Theatre has launched products across 14 categories, including toys, board games and apparel. These products are available across 1,500 stores besides multiple online platforms.
Angry Birds has completed 5 years of existence earlier this year and their huge fan base in India continues to grow in strength. It’s the biggest addiction after Facebook and gamers on an average spend 20 million minutes per day with Angry Birds! Here’s more record breaking news: Angry Birds, in all of its forms, has been downloaded 2 billion times. And this massive popularity has led Rovio to come up with Angry Birds movie, which will be releasing in the coming year.

It seems everywhere you turn these days, Angry Birds are there.

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Angry Birds at Kids-o-fest! Yet another hit with kids and youth!

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Angry Birds at Siliguri!
Angry Birds is always the star attraction at events encouraging footfalls and giving everyone an opportunity to experience the brand up-close.

Since Angry Birds inception in December 2009, the game has garnered 2.5 billion downloads globally. One of the most downloaded games of all time, Angry Birds is now coming to life at the Kids-o-fest, East India’s first and biggest kids and Inter School Festival. The fest connects business and brands with school, kids and family.

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Kids-o-fest was a four-day event organized by Shri Ram Centennial School and Savin Kingdom, commenced from December 18th to 1st. The fest was held at Savin Kingdom in Dagapur where an inter-school fest called ‘Blitzkrieg 2014’ was also held. Students from more than 200 schools in and around Siliguri had come participate in the event.

“Angry Birds is the first class example of how popularity of digital properties and games is transcending demographics and geographies. We are delighted to bring both these superbly popular properties to their fans in Siliguri to engage with and enjoy”, said Jiggy George founder and CEO of Dream Theatre, an entertainment, sports, fashion licensing and brand management firm.

Dream Theatre, which has licensing rights for Angry Birds, has launched products across 14 categories, including toys, board games, apparel and stationery.
Angry Birds’ branded products are now available across 1,500 stores besides multiple online platforms.

Is Angry Birds a fad that has passed its glory in India?

India’s licensing fraternity is infamous for pronouncing a verdict without checking the veracity. Part of the problem is the fragmented retail and the other part is our rather short term view of things.

The Trade which is predominantly “Mom and Pop “retail are always looking for something new. To believe that any property/brand  can work over decades as an evergreen is certainly a “No”.  It’s against the fabric of variety.

To add to this, in both organized retail and scattered trade; there are a lot of decision makers who conclude on a property basis of a sample size of one or two. So, if my child or nephew/niece don’t like a property: well, then it surely does not work across India.

I have sales team that have waited patiently while a client calls his kids at home, hoping that she loves what we are selling. It’s hilarious for many and frustrating to others. Well, to me, the problem with Angry Birds is the amazing success. I call it a problem as unlike most brands built through the traditional machinery of TV; Angry Birds came out of the digital world. A game taking the big names in licensing to the cleaners had to be seen as a fad. How else would we be able to explain it successful?

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In India, Angry birds unprecedented success was built on transference: a MalcolmGlad well kind of tipping point. Lots of products mushroomed in neighboring markets and our very enterprising entrepreneurs put them in bags and containers and brought them into India. Suddenly, the Red bird was omnipresent. We at Dream Theatre were a year late in launching the products and we now have over 800 products in 15 odd categories. So, why is the angry bird’s success a problem?

 

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Well, the guys who are pronouncing it dead are not following the statistics.  How can a brand that is at 100 and is now scoring at 70 be seen a failure. The fact is that at 70, it outpaces most of the leaders. This summer our back to school supplies and bags did the best secondary sales among the gamut of licensees across licencors.We have signed up more categories that will unravel next year and the plan is to go deeper. To be available across the length and breadth of India and at price points that are affordable to the “Mass” and “Class”

The superstar birds made an appearance at World Children Expo and the excitement of the consumers was palpable. The fans completely loved them and the show attracted more crowds and excitement than most of the brands that made an appearance.

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What excited us more is that Rovio really wants to build an evergreen brand. They believe they are just getting started.  There is real urgency and intent: We at Dream Theatre are ecstatic with the pipeline. To add to this, there is a new experienced licensing team at the helm of things and processes that are very nimble. To read about it, click: http://www.licensing.biz/news/read/promotions-and-new-hires-bolster-rovio-licensing-team/040134

There are more games in the anvil and everyone is awaiting the movie coming up in 2016.

To see more of it, click:


We are awaiting the second coming of the brand. Make no mistake; the second coming in India is just a matter of scale to move from 70 to 100 and not from zero to 100.

Squack Squack! Watch this space.

Jiggy George

Dream Theatre on Social Media

Hello Everyone!
It is our pleasure to get to your notice that Dream Theatre is on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and is hoping to get in touch with you all. We appreciate you choosing to “Like” us on Facebook or “Follow” us on LinkedIn and Twitter as you will know when we post announcements, recent launches, tie-ups, contest etc.
We hope to give everyone more insight as to what’s happening in the Licensing front, as well as sneak peak on upcoming products. Feel free to drop by if any queries, we would love to hear from you!
Thanks in advance!

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