Licensing Industry Grows 4.6%

Global sales of licensed merchandise and services reached $356.5 billion in 2023, up 4.6% compared to 2022, says Licensing International.

License Global

May 21, 2024

2 Min Read
Maura Regan, Licensing International, License Global
Maura Regan, Licensing InternationalLicense Global

Licensing International has released an executive summary of its 2024 Global Licensing Industry Study. The study shows the continued worldwide sales growth of licensed products and services across categories including fashion, entertainment, music, location-based entertainment, sports, and more.

This year’s Global Licensing Industry Study will be published later this summer and was conducted by third-party research firm Brandar Consulting.

“The global brand licensing industry shows no signs of slowing down. In 2023, consumers proved they are more loyal than ever before to the brands, characters, and properties they love,” says Maura Regan, president, Licensing International. “In fact, the global brand licensing industry once again performed better than the overall worldwide retail market, proving brands are a difference-maker.”

The 2024 Global Study results are derived from multiple sources of market information as well as data reports from 45 countries and all seven major geographic regions. In all, the study’s analysis includes specific licensing data from 899 companies spanning the globe.

Key takeaways from the 2024 Global Licensing Industry Study include:

  • The Entertainment/Characters segment grew 6.9% to reach $147.6 billion in revenue. In this segment, anime, video games and social media accounted for 38% of the licensed revenues in 2023. Recently launched titles, characters, or brands accounted for 22% of the entertainment segment while evergreen titles, characters, or brands accounted for 73%.

  • Top performing property categories in 2023 included music (+16.4%), location-based entertainment/themed attractions (+13.5%) and aports (+5.6%).

  • The biggest decline in a product category was in the licensed toy segment, which saw revenue fall -3.5% in 2023. It was clear that beloved brands inspired purchases, however, as the toys/games market overall actually declined -4.5% worldwide.

  • The e-commerce retail channel for the licensing industry expanded again in 2023 to reach a 37% share of global licensing sales.

  • Several regions reported above market average growth rates in 2023, including North Asia (+9.3%), ME/Africa (+7.5%), South Asia/PAC (+7.4%) and Eastern Europe (+7.1%).

Related:Licensing International Excellence Awards Winners Revealed

Further results from Licensing International’s 2024 Global Licensing Industry Study will be published in the complete report, including regional and country-by-country breakdowns for major markets. The full Global Study will be made available for free to Licensing International members (and publicly for purchase) later this summer.

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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