Ingram discusses the differences between Japan and other overseas markets as well as why it is exhibiting at the inaugural event.
Why do you believe the Japanese market offers strong opportunities for growth?
We recognize the Japanese market as fully mature and stagnant. Still, it plays a large role as the center of trends in Asia, which offers us strong opportunities.
Identify the specific brands that you are targeting for expansion in Japan?
The properties from San-X, in particular Rilakkuma, is our main focus in the global market, including Japan.
What are the characteristics of your brands that you believe will make them popular among Japanese consumers?
We can no longer expect long-term growth simply with cute characters. In this mature market we must present our properties with clear background and vision. Otherwise, the consumers will not see good value in the products they want.
What are some of the key initiatives that you have implemented in Japan?
In 2017, we are targeting the non-fashion categories, as we have already done quite a good job with fashion licenses.
What retailers or product categories are you targeting for your licensed products?
We would like to enhance the food and drink category.
What are the major differences between the licensing market in Japan and overseas?
Japan's licensing market shares the same characteristics as other overseas markets, yet, from another standpoint, it is completely different. If we are to point out one big difference, Japanese consumers traditionally love and are familiar with characters much longer than those in the overseas markets.
What are your primary reasons for exhibiting at Licensing Expo Japan?
We have a few reasons, the biggest being that the show is operated by the organizer of Licensing Expo in Las Vegas.