LM interviewed Maria Giovanna Gurrieri, General Manager Southern Europe, CPLG.
The Bologna Licensing Trade Fair 2019 has just ended and we asked one of the main market players about the news launched last week and the feedback received.
How was this 12th edition of the Bologna Licensing Trade Fair?
We are very satisfied: we have worked a lot, as always from the rest. For us, Bologna is one of the main events of the year, certainly the reference for the Italian market. The Fair is a splendid location to be able to meet the industry and at the same time allows us to see the offer of our competitors.
What are the properties that you pushed most this year?
For the very first time here in Bologna we are presenting Line Friends, a Korean property that comes from their chat service – Line – and they are the stickers that are used inside the app. It is an iconic property, very beautiful and very new for the Italian market. Then we presented Ugly Dolls, for which an animation film is scheduled for release in November 2019 in Italian cinemas. A very beautiful international project that speaks of diversity and acceptance, a very important and very fashionable message for the new generations. The target is that of families, which makes it an even more appealing property: it speaks to children from the pre-school age, as it is fun and colorful, and has different levels of reading, being enjoyable even for parents and for young adults, who can better understand the contents.
As for the more classic properties like Felix the Cat and Pink Panther, how do you make them always current and appealing even for a younger audience?
First of all it is a work of graphics and design. So there is a very important style guide work behind, which is in step with current trends. Moreover, both are very versatile characters: Pink Panther has been working on licensing for over sixty years. The important thing is to find the right partnerships and always be in step with the times. Alternatively, you can leave freedom to the right creatives and designers, who give their particular interpretation of the property, beyond the style guides. The strength of CPLG is knowing the needs of those who own the property, their strengths and weaknesses, their ambitions, the results they want to achieve, and knowing how to do a twinning job by presenting ideas and making projects together, through choices extremely careful and calibrated.
What is your social communication strategy?
The social media is indispensable today as today, but as an agency the characters are not ours and consequently it is not up to us to spread the contents of the property. At the same time, given that the owners are not present on the territory and therefore they too very often are not active at national level, where we recognize that having a presence on social media can be important to continue the development of a specific brand, we look for partners that are strong in this area. With them we communicate the project realized and in this way we also have a greater editorial freedom. For example, both Felix the Cat and Pink Panther worked with designer Alessandro Enriquez, who has an important round of contacts and is an influencer himself.