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The Licensing Mixtape: Topps’ Ira Friedman on Publishing, ‘Star Wars’ and the Power of Collectibles

Catch up with a true-blue industry legend in the latest episode of The Licensing Mixtape as Ira Friedman of Topps shines a light on a fascinating career of world-firsts.

License Global

July 24, 2021

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From his time in creative publishing to his time at LucasFilm ahead of the launch of “The Empire Strikes Back,” or his tenure at Topps – working with Garbage Pail Kids and some of the world’s greatest brands – Ira Friedman, vice president, licensing, Topps, knows a thing or two about fan engagement.

License Global speaks with Friedman about how his iconic career spanned countless brands, licenses and saw countless firsts.

The Licensing Mixtape · S3 E4: Ira Friedman of Topps Talks Publishing, ‘Star Wars’ and Trading Cards

“Most of my career had been spent developing products in publishing at the time,” says Friedman. “But trading cards were a form of publishing. So, it was not all that far from what I had been doing for the bulk of my career up until that point. So, it was through Topps and working in product development that brought me into the licensing circle, and Topps has been one of the pioneering companies in licensing going back to the ‘50s when the company was working with the likes of Hop-a-Long Cassidy from Disney or Elvis Presley.”

Listen to the new episode now and ubscribe to the podcast on iTunesGoogle PodcastsStitcher  or Spotify.

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About the Author(s)

License Global

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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