Trends & Research


14 Jun - 2023

Tags from the story: Licensing International.

Licensing International has released an executive summary of its 8th annual Global Licensing Industry Study.

The study shows the continued global sales growth of licensed merchandise across categories spanning retail, entertainment, sports, and more.

This year’s Global Licensing Industry Study is sponsored by Amazon. The full report will be published later this summer and was conducted by third-party research firm Brandar Consulting, LLC.

In 2022, the licensing industry performed better than the overall retail market, in part due to increased revenue within the location-based entertainment and licensed services sectors. Driving these results were worldwide market trends that remained heavily impacted by the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic as industries battled record-breaking inflation rates and consumer behavior shifted toward location-based entertainment.

The licensing industry has an ever-evolving ability to meet consumers where they are. In 2022, consumers embraced location-based products and services, and global brands delivered those experiences through stunning innovation”, said Maura Regan, President of Licensing International. “Consumers looked to rediscover the world while connecting with one another in person, and property categories such as Sports, Music, and Collegiate soared as a result”.

As widespread economic hardship continued to influence markets, consumers were faced with the need to make shrewd decisions about their spending. The licensing industry’s outperformance of the overall retail market finds that brands were a major point of difference, driving purchases toward fan-favorite properties and characters.

The 2023 Global Study results are derived from multiple sources of market information as well as data reports from 41 countries and all seven major geographic regions. In all, the 2023 Global Study’s analysis includes specific licensing data from 894 companies spanning the globe.

Key takeaways from the 2023 Global Licensing Industry Study include:

  • In line with the finding that location-based entertainment was a major revenue driver, top performing growth property categories in 2022 included Music (up 26%), Sports (up 19%), and Collegiate (up 11%).
  • Respondents commented on the continued “void” in new entertainment brands, with many theatrical releases in 2022 focused on franchise sequels. Corporate brands filled that void through refreshed properties and reported 13% growth.
  • The Non-Profit space saw significant increases last year with 25% growth and more agents were seen representing Non-Profit organizations in 2022.
  • Location-Based Entertainment/Promotions (up 67%) and Licensed Services including Restaurants, Hotels, Travel, and Hospitality (up 205%) saw explosive growth compared to 2021.
  • Pet Products grew 39% and the product category is expected to continue to show strength as recent data from Forbes reports that 78% of pet owners today acquired their pets during the pandemic.
  • Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DEI) remained at the forefront of consumer and companies’ minds, with brand owners and manufacturers supporting DEI in how they produce their products and consumers supporting DEI in how they purchase them.

This topline preview analyzes worldwide revenue across all major property categories, including entertainment, corporate, sports, fashion, publishing, and more in relation to overall economic and social trends. Further results from Licensing International’s 2023 Global Licensing Industry Study will be published in the complete report, including regional and country-by-country breakdowns for major markets, which will be made available for free to Licensing International members (and publicly for purchase) later this summer.

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