According to results from the Annual Global Licensing Industry Survey released by the International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association (LIMA), retail and related revenue generated globally by the trademark licensing business in 2017 rose 3.3 percent to US$271.6B. Royalty revenue from sales of licensed merchandise and services rose 2.6 percent to $14.5 billion.
Entertainment/character licensing remains the largest industry category, accounting for $121.5 billion, or 44.7 percent of the total global licensing market. Corporate/brand trademarks was the next biggest property type, generating US$55.8 billion in retail receipts for 20.5 percent of total revenues, followed by fashion with $32.1 billion and sports with $26.5 billion. Some of the most significant growth came from property types that play somewhat smaller roles in the overall business, including publishing-based properties and art licensing. In addition, the music and celebrity categories saw growth reflective of the “influencers” effect.
The U.S. and Canada remain the largest market for licensed merchandise and services, with revenue accounting for 58 percent of the global total. The strongest increase came from North Asia (up 6.2 percent) and Latin America (up 7.6 percent), primarily driven by growth in China/Hong Kong, Japan, and Brazil.
Overall, growth was widespread among categories last year. Apparel, toys, and fashion accessories continue to account for the largest shares of the business. Casino gaming/lotteries increased by 9.6 percent, as a greater number of licensors seek to expand into more non-traditional categories. Home-related categories, infant, and video games/software/apps all showed growth higher than the overall 2017 average.
The LIMA Annual Global Licensing Survey was conducted for the fourth straight year for LIMA by Brandar Consulting LLC. Further information will be published on the LIMA website via Inside Licensing news service. The complete report, including regional and country-by-country breakdowns for major markets, will be made available at no charge to LIMA members later this summer.