So, with the Children’s Media Conference packed away for another year, we thought it would be a great opportunity to re-cap on PowerStation Studios’ involvement in CMC17!

This year at CMC, PowerStation joined forces with LIMA and Rovio to help present the informative seminar: Is your IP Ready for Licensing? The session and panel discussion gave valuable insights into what licensing partners are actually looking for before they commit to supporting an IP in the consumer goods business.

With guest speakers from across the industry including Ryan Beaird (Marketing and Operations Manager, LIMA), Justin McGiffin (Licensing Director global Hardlines, Rovio Entertainment), Johanne Broadfield (VP of Cartoon network enterprises EMEA, Turner-Cartoon Network) and Eloise Kurtis (Licensing manager, LEGO) there was plenty of licensing wisdom to be shared.

kicking off the seminar, Ryan Beaird introduced who the Licensing Industry Merchandisers Association (LIMA) were and then gave an overview of how licensing works.

Beaird shared an example of a RovioAngry Birds style-guide (produced by PowerStation Studios) to illustrate the various stages within the process. This included everything from the creative journey (establishing what designs would work, artistically), implementation disciplines, development costs and finally some of the challenges faced when working in licensing. Using this style-guide as an example of best practice, he continued to highlight how PowerStation had successfully taken ‘Angry Birds from screen to shelf.



Next, he discussed the importance of effectively translating creative ideas into something commercially usable. Turning IP’s to licensing requires buy-in from manufacturers across the retail world, including many categories and product ranges such as clothing, gifts, toys, food, footwear. Due to the diversity of product options, half the challenge is identifying future trends and understanding what direction will be profitable for licensing partners and stakeholders alike. Some of the benefits found with licensing initiatives include an increased consumer brand awareness, additional revenue streams and a wider marketing reach. This all helps contribute towards the funding of further content development.

The seminar continued with the other guest speakers’ discussion points and then moved onto questions from the audience.

When asked if IP developers should consider licensed product when developing new content, the panel unanimously agreed that the focus should instead be on developing great stories and characters – not to be distracted by product. With a great story and recognisable characters, product introduction shouldn’t be an issue. The audience then asked the panel if there was a trend towards less gender specific product. Eloise agreed that whilst there was a trend in that direction, some IPs such as LEGO Friends suggested that children still wanted gender specific toys. Johanne also acknowledged that there were still very different play patterns between boys and girls. Whilst it’s dangerous to put an IP into a specific gender box, it’s still essential to make sure the toys themselves fit play patterns to achieve higher sales.


Seminar takeaway points:

  • Licensed product represents a great opportunity to extend brand awareness, improve marketing channels and increase revenue streams.
  • Parents and kids will pay a premium for branded product, and retailers see value in this.
  • Great stories and characters are the heart of licensed product success.


Overall, the seminar provided some great industry insights for both seasoned practitioners and industry newbies alike. It provided interesting topic points and touched on crucial elements of successfully licensing an IP.


PowerStation Studios were proud to provide their services for the seminar; helping to communicate best practices in achieving licensing excellence. We look forward to working with the Children’s Media Conference, LIMA, Rovio and other partners again for future initiatives.


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