10 Minutes With … Laura Freedman-Dagg on What Retailers Can Expect at Licensing Expo 2024

Ahead of Licensing Expo, License Global spoke with Laura Freedman-Dagg, head, retail, Informa Markets, about retailers attending the show and what they can expect.

Jane Neal, Content Editor

May 13, 2024

3 Min Read
Laura Freedman-Dagg, Global Licensing Group
Laura Freedman-DaggGlobal Licensing Group

What’s new this year for retailers at Licensing Expo? 

Laura Freedman-Dagg: The main attraction for retail attendees at Licensing Expo is, and I expect always will be, the brands on show. We’re excited to welcome new names to the exhibitor list like LEGO, Surge Licensing, American Red Cross and Liquid Death. The newness doesn’t stop with the new exhibitors though; the show is known as an opportunity to hear what’s new from all its exhibitors, and that’s why it appeals to retailers. They attend to assess what’s coming up and to meet the people behind the brands their customers are likely to be excited about in the coming years. 

The Retail Lounge, sponsored by Falcon’s Beyond, is back for its second year and will provide a place for retailers to host their meetings. There are already more meetings booked for that space than we saw last year, so while it’s not brand new it’s certainly an element of the retail offering that’s being utilized more.

Can you talk about some of retailers which are registering to attend Licensing Expo? 

We have retailers registered for the show from more than 40 countries. Too many to list but as an example, Cotton On from Australia, Lojas Riachuelo from Brazil, ALDO Group from Canada, Tesco from the U.K., Miniso Group from China, Inditex from Spain, Deichmann from Germany, Celio from France, GS25 from Korea, Suburbia from Mexico, PEPCO from Poland, H&M from Sweden … you get the picture.

Related:11:11 Media Co-Founders, Paris Hilton and Bruce Gersh, Head to Licensing Expo

Many of the retail names we’ve welcomed before are returning in sizable groups. These include Walmart, Hot Topic, Target, Amazon, Burlington, TJX, Spencer’s, Ross Stores. Exhibitors can view all registered retailers and pre-book time with them on the Meetings Platform. 

Why should retailers come to Licensing Expo? In what ways can it help them grow their business?

Licensing Expo is the world’s foremost gathering of global brands and licensing professionals. For retailers who already do licensing, it’s a great opportunity to meet with existing partners, move deals forward and research what might be hot in the coming years. For those who don’t already do much licensing, it’s the best introduction you could get. Sessions include an orientation and Licensing 101, Exclusive Insights into the 2024 Global Licensing Industry Study and a show floor tour for first-timers. Brand licensing can be a lot to consider – from choosing the best brands for your customer base to navigating the contractual side of partnership – but the community is incredibly warm, so advice and support are easy to find at the show.

Related:10 Minutes With … Licensing Expo on What’s New in 2024 and How to Make the Most of the Show

Are there any trends you’re seeing in retail registrations, for example, new categories or types of retailers?

The range of retailers registering for Licensing Expo is broad but we’re seeing some themes, including those selling baby products, home furnishings and anime-specific online stores. Toys and apparel are always very strong categories for us and that will certainly be the case again this year.

What types of IP are retailers looking to connect with at LE? 

I’ve noticed a lot of interest in Hello Kitty and Netflix IP in particular. There’s excitement about LEGO taking space on the show floor too. We make a concerted effort to advise all attendees to ‘shop the show floor,' and often they arrive looking for a particular brand but spot a new opportunity on a completely different booth. While pre-show planning and pre-booked meetings are so important, I’m expecting attendees to use the show as an opportunity for discovery too.

Licensing Expo takes place from May 21-23 at Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nev.

Register for Licensing Expo 2024.

About the Author(s)

Jane Neal

Content Editor, License Global

Jane Neal is a Content Editor for License Global. Working remotely in the great state of Wisconsin, Jane specializes in retail and pop-culture trends.

She has worked extensively in the communication field as a managing editor, advertising copywriter, technical writer and journalist. She detoured for several years into academia where she taught journalism, English and humanities at the college level.

A complete Marvel nerd, she enjoys food, films, fishing, friends and family … and alliteration.

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