Brand Experience

Licensing International Study Reveals Global Sales And Challenges In India

23 March, 2024

Recent industry analysis reveals an uptick in the global sales of licensed merchandise and services, propelling the market to new heights. In 2022, global sales soared to $340.8 billion, marking an 8.02% increase from the previous year, signifying an upward trend that experts predict will continue.

In this thriving market, certain regions outshine others. The APAC region, particularly under Warner Bros. Discovery’s (WBD) wing, has displayed remarkable growth, far surpassing the global average. Vikram Sharma, Head of WBD’s Consumer Products, Advertising & Partnerships, points to high double-digit growth over recent years, underlining the momentum that these licensed goods and services are gaining.

Despite these successes, India’s story varies quite significantly. With a market size of $2.175 billion— representing a mere 0.64% of the global market share—it remains a burgeoning arena with vast untapped potential. Sharma holds an optimistic view of India’s emerging market, seeing it not only as a growth opportunity but as a land ripe with licensing possibilities. Encouraging signs, such as a burgeoning economy and government-supported infrastructure projects, are setting the stage for what could be an explosion in retail growth.

The licensing industry in India, however, faces unique hurdles. The concept of licensing is still emerging, with a general lack of awareness and understanding among partners and retailers about its benefits. Sharma emphasizes the need for education around the monetization of Intellectual Properties (IPs) beyond content alone, highlighting the value of leveraging franchises across different business facets.

Adding to the challenges are issues like widespread piracy, which stymies industry maturation, and a distribution landscape that does not mirror the global scale of licensed product distribution. Furthermore, India’s retail sector remains largely unorganized, overshadowing the organized sector despite e-commerce’s significant strides.

To adapt and thrive in such an environment, WBD champions a dual approach that caters to consumers and partners alike. For consumers, maintaining emotional connections with their cherished IPs is key, ensuring that storytelling and fan engagement are consistent across all platforms. For partners, acting as a solution provider helps align with their strategic objectives and Key Results Areas (KRAs). Sharma explains that true licensing value emerges when the attributes of the IP align with the partners’ needs, whether that’s market share gains, brand strengthening, or channel expansion.

Insights from the APAC region indicate that licencing can be propelled by young adult females—a demographic WBD is eager to engage in India. Recognizing the momentum young adult females can bring to the licensing industry, Sharma expresses a commitment to pioneer this focus in the Indian market.

WBD’s proactive approach involves partnering with leaders across various industry categories, understanding that collaboration with top players is essential for nurturing a robust licensing market.

In India, a compelling example of successful licensing integration involves WBD’s partnership with Zebronics in involving popular IPs to attract a younger demographic. The entry of Warner music into Zebronics’ product lines, coupled with anticipated launches like the Aquaman-inspired range, underscores the power of blending pop culture with consumer electronics.

Another testament to the effective use of licensed properties is WBD’s collaboration with boAt. The integration of DC themes into audio accessories helped boAt set itself apart in a crowded market, tapping into the emotional appeal of the iconic franchise.

Moreover, WBD’s foray into the alcoholic beverage sector with Bira 91 demonstrated the expansiveness of licensing opportunities. A limited edition House of Dragon beer, combined with interactive events and social media promotion, positioned Bira 91 as an innovator in its field while leveraging the House of Dragon’s fanbase for brand engagement.

While discussing Gym Marketing and More Gym Members, license-based marketing strategies can be quite beneficial. Creative applications of popular franchises can enhance Gym Lead Generation and create impactful Advertising For Gyms through association with admired IPs. Furthermore, utilizing platforms like Facebook Ads can extend the reach of these promotional efforts, engaging new and existing members alike.

In conclusion, the growth of the licensed merchandise and services market is an affirming sign of its resilience and integral role in global marketing strategies. With the prudent application of IPs across various industries, companies can harness their power to connect with audiences, creating a symbiotic relationship between brands, franchises, and their devoted followers. As the market continues to evolve, the potential for innovation and expansion seems virtually limitless.