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August 24, 2021
The winners of the 2021 Licensing International Excellence Awards were unveiled today in a virtual gathering that brought together nearly 1,000 industry executives from around the world to celebrate the best of the best.
The 22 award winners from seven countries – China, Finland, France, Japan, Singapore, U.K. and U.S. – were selected from among 152 nominees from around the world who made the final ballot. More than 650 entries were received and an elite global judging panel narrowed those down to the final ballot, which was voted on by members of the licensing industry at large. The winners were announced from locations around the world by executives from the event sponsors – Alifish, InSpirit Designs, ViacomCBS Consumer Products and Wildbrain CPLG.
The awards honor innovation and creativity in the way brands use licensing to further their goals, how licensees develop and bring to market products using those licenses and how retailers creatively spotlight licenses on their shelves. One special award added this year was for the Pandemic Pivot, recognizing companies’ efforts to use licensing to react to the global effects of the Coronavirus. From among six companies on the ballot, Peanuts Worldwide took home that honor for its work in developing and making available for free in-home educational materials and lesson plans, among its other efforts.
In addition to honoring the work of the nominees and winners, the ceremony included the announcement that Kathy Ireland, chief executive officer and chief designer, kathy ireland Worldwide and Salvatore LaRocca, president, global partnerships, National Basketball Association as the newest inductees into the Licensing Hall of Fame; they’ll be formally feted at an event in late October.
This was also a showcase of this year’s six international Rising Stars: James Choi (ELLALAN), Addie Dorsey Goossens (Ubisoft), Rachel Hak (Crayola), Kevin Ramsey (Warren James), Jyoti Sardana (OneTeam Partners) and Carolina Verdugo (Beanstalk).
“In our 36th year of honoring the best of the global licensing industry, it’s inspiring to see the quality of the work produced by people and companies even as they were adapting to new ways of creating and collaborating amid the effects of the pandemic,” says Maura Regan, president, Licensing International. “The achievements that we honor today are a testament to the power of brands and the power of licensing as a business to create products and programs with lasting appeal.”
Here are the 2021 Licensing International Excellence Awards winners:
Best Licensed Products:
Apparel/Footwear/Accessories – Dr. Martens for Jean-Michel Basquiat Boots;
Appliance / Automotive / Housewares / Electronics ¬ Beijing Xiaomi Mobile Software Co. for Pokémon Travel;
Toys/Games/Novelties for Ages 0-8 – PlayMonster for “Peppa Pig” Grow & Play Peppa Pots;
Apps/Software/Video Games – “Top Golf for Angry Birds” Interactive Golf Game;
Food/Beverage – Kinnerton Confectionery for “Harry Potter” Chocolate Range;
Health and Beauty Aids – Mad Beauty for “Friends” Bath and Body Essentials;
Home Décor – Secret Lab for Batman Gaming Chairs;
Publishing/Back-to-School – Chronicle Books for LEGO Note Brick; and
Toys/Games/Novelties – LEGO for Andy Warhol LEGO Art Edition.
Best Licensed Brands:
Art/Design/Celebrity/Fashion Brand – “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle Studio
Digital/App/Video Game Brand – “Super Mario” by Nintendo;
Corporate Bran – Goodyear by The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company and IMG;
Entertainment/Character Brand: Animated – “Peppa Pig” by Hasbro and Hasbro China;
Entertainment/Character Brand: Live Action – “Harry Potter” by Warner Bros. France;
Food/Beverage/Restaurant Brand – Coca-Cola, Hi-C and Sprite by The Coca-Cola Company; and
Sports/Collegiate Brand – NFLPA by NFL Players Association.
Best Licensed Promotion – Direct Line and Born Licensing for “We’re On It” with Transformers, TMNT and Robocop;
Best Licensed Collaboration – Crayola x Adidas x Donovan Mitchell
Best Retailer for a Character/Entertainment Initiative – BoxLunch for Marvel Eat the Universe;
Best Retailer for a Corporate/Lifestyle/Sports Initiative – H&M for Coca-Cola;
Best Licensing Agency – IMG; and
The Pandemic Pivot Award – “Peanuts” At-Home-Offerings by Peanuts Worldwide.
License Global is the leading news source for the brand licensing industry, delivering award-winning editorial content including news, trends, analysis, and special reports about the global consumer product and retail marketplace.
Through its print edition, website, daily e-newsletter and event publications, License Global reaches more than 150,000 executives and professionals in all major markets. The magazine also serves as the official publication for the sector’s trade events, which include Licensing Expo, Brand Licensing Europe, Licensing Expo Japan, Licensing Expo Shanghai and the Licensing Leadership Summit.
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