Those are a few of the themes propelling the entertainment industry hard-sell expected this week at the International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association‘s (LIMA) annual Licensing Expo. Deals with manufacturers and retailers at the Las Vegas confab can determine what chachkas will appear on store shelves beginning this year. And execs are more upbeat than usual as they offer opportunities to license images tied to upcoming sequels to Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Fantastic Four, Superman, James Bond, and Finding Nemo for toys, T-shirts, and goodness knows what else. “Everybody is trying to get share of mind with consumers,” says LIMA SVP Marty Brochstein.
Entertainment companies — including TV and digital video providers — will be buoyed by strong sales figures from 2013 that the trade group will announce today. Stores in the U.S. and Canada sold $51.4B in merchandise tied to entertainment properties last year (+4.3% vs 2012) with licensing revenues of $2.7B (+4.3%). Entertainment was the industry’s biggest category: It accounted for 44.4% of the $115.7B in total retail sales (+3.3%), and 47.2% of the $5.6B in licensing revenues (also +3.3%). (more…)