As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to claim the live event space in a fresh round of cancelations and “postponements,” the toy and licensing industries are looking ahead to 2022 with an optimistic approach that packed convention centers will once again be the norm.
After two years of doing virtual events, Licensing Expo is targeting May 24-26 for its return to the in-person format for which it’s known. Presented by Informa Markets in partnership with Licensing International, Licensing Expo expects to welcome the global licensing community back to Las Vegas for three days of face-to-face networking at Mandalay Bay.
“For more than 40 years, Licensing Expo has served as the gathering place for the global licensing community to network, ink deals, and celebrate,” says Anna Knight, vice president, licensing, Informa Markets. “For many of our exhibitors and attendees alike, this event is where new business connections are made or renewed. It’s incredibly powerful to explore the vibrant Expo floor and discover your next partnership or experience the up-and-coming products that will line retail shelves and shape consumer behaviors in the coming years.”
According to Knight, the event will feature “a new-age format that encompasses the best of in-person connections enhanced by the best that digital has to offer.”
The theme for 2022 is Location-Based Experience, with a focus on how intellectual property (IP) owners can leverage the power of their brands to connect in the real world. Some examples include the Peppa Pig theme park being built in Florida, the Mattel Adventure Park being constructed in Arizona, and the recent Stranger Things drive-through experience in Los Angeles.
“Licensing is so tactile, this community wants to feel and experience an IP during business meetings, and Licensing Expo provides a platform to do just that,” says Licensing International President Maura Regan. “We hope to see many returning faces and look forward to welcoming newcomers in Las Vegas in a few short months, so we can share the renewed industry-building excitement and ample opportunity that Expo provides.”
Registration will open soon and manufacturers, retailers, and IP owners interested in participating should visit licensingexpo.com for further details.