Licensing Expo China; An Interview with Jessica Blue

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6a0133ec87bd6d970b01b8d26895a0970c-120wiLicensing Expo China is coming in July. I was interested in learning more so I spoke with Jessica Blue, Senior Vice President, Licensing with leadership responsibilities of the global UBM licensing portfolio. In this role, Blue is responsible for steering the strategy and growth of the UBM Licensing brands and teams including Licensing Expo, Brand Licensing Europe (BLE) and License! Global magazine. Prior to this, Blue was Vice President of Licensing Expo (2012-2015), the licensing sector’s largest and most important event held in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

Richard: Someone considering attending might like to know the state of licensing in China and Asia. Can you tell us a licensing in China? Are western brands hot? What local brands will be there?

Jessica: China is the world’s fastest-growing licensing market, and has achieved a total retail revenue of USD$7.6 Billion of licensed products in China (including Hong Kong) to date. Licensing in China is still very young, but energetic. We can see that companies, such as Disney, Hasbro, and Mattel, have tested and entered the market and have enjoyed great success. Chinese consumers are also into Transformers, Avengers, Tomas and Friends, and Elsa and Anna from Disney’s Frozen. Some local brands that are popular are Ali the Fox, Monkey King, Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf to name a few.

China Licensing Awards

Richard: Licensing Expo China 2017 will be taking place in Shanghai this July. Can you give us more detail on the exact dates, hours of operation, location and any major events during the show?

Jessica: The show dates are July 18-20, 2017 from 9am-5pm at the National Exhibition and Convention Center (NECC) in Shanghai, China. The venue is one stop metro from the Hongqiao Hub. Aside from the exhibition, there will be tailor-made business matching sessions, Licensing Seminars & Summits, a character parade, China Licensing Awards Ceremony, networking parties and more. This year, Licensing Expo China is co-located with CBME China 2017, the world’s largest baby product trade fair with over 4,000 brands and over 88,000 trade professionals in attendance, of which our licensors can benefit from! You can find out more details by checking out our website:

Character Gallery

Richard: How should potential attendees go about getting more detail on the event and securing hotels near the Exhibition Center, etc.? Some good restaurants in the area would be good to know as well. As I recall, Shanghai is known for their dumplings.

Jessica: Yes. Shanghai, is a multi-cultural metropolis, with both modern and traditional Chinese features. Shanghai is the largest base of Chinese industrial technology, one of the most important seaports and China's largest commercial and financial center, drawing much global attention.

Attendees can visit Licensing Expo China at for the information about travel, hotel, food and more.

We are working with OneWorld Alliance to provide both exhibitors and visitors discounted airfares. We have partnered with Ctrip to get discounted accommodations for all attendees.

For food and drinks, Shanghai is a very diverse and international city. You can find a good sample of almost every cuisine in the city. At the venue, there are over 50 food and beverage providers for Western and Asian food. Right adjacent to the hotel is the Intercontinental Hotel with a mix of fine-dining restaurants and bars, including dumplings (Jiao Zi & Xiao Long Bao).

Richard: What will be some of the leading Chinese brands that will be exhibiting at the show? Will other Asian brand holders be in exhibiting?

Jessica: We have a great mix of brands from mainland China, other Asian countries/regions and Western brands: Baby Looney Tunes, Baby Tom and Jerry, Beijing Opera Cats, Boonie Bears, Boonie Cubs, Brainy Bubbly Bug Buddies, Brambly Hedge, Britto, Cherokee, Chicken Stew, Doraemon Baby, Emoji movie, Flip Flop, Kagerou Project, OVERWATCH, Paris Hilton, Paul Frank, Pets Rock, Pincoat, Precious Moments, Rabbids, Rebecca Bon Bon, Shinchan,

Shopkins, superbaby, the Simpsons, The Zodiac Series, TonyHawk, VOCALOID “IA” War of Warcraft, Wingcle Bear, ZHUAIMAO, and more.

Richard: Other than China, what other countries will have large contingents at the Expo?

Jessica: There are more western brands than China local players. Also, there are licensors and licensees from the US, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong SAR, Taiwan Region, Singapore and more Southeast Asian countries.

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