Why you – as a licensee – should get closer to licensing agents.
While many food and beverage brands have their own in-house licensing teams, others choose to look to agents to expand their reach into new categories. Licensees need to work closely with both in order to be considered for lucrative brand extension partnerships.
One licensing agency making waves in the food and beverage space is Brandgenuity, which represents brands like White Castle, Mrs. Fields, TCBY (in the US), Welch’s (in Europe) and Anheuser-Busch (in Canada, Europe and Asia).
One key licensing deal in the food and beverage space for Brandgenuity saw Anheuser-Busch collaborate with Savencia for the Pave a la Leffe, a cheese using the flavours of Leffe beer. However, in the next 12 months, Brandgenuity is set to develop a host of food extensions for White Castle, which will range from meat snacks and salty snacks to condiments and sliced cheese; Mrs. Fields, which will include confections, baking ingredients and frozen breakfast items; TCBY, where the company will focus on frozen novelties and yogurt-based snacks; Welch’s, which the agency plans to expand into juice, frozen fruit, smoothies and more; and more. Additionally, Brandgenuity will explore a host of food extensions for Anheuser-Busch.
Fellow agency Beanstalk has also turned to food and beverage licensing with brands like Guinness, Baileys, Captain Morgan and Godiva.
Building on its robust assortment of properties, “The agency plans to focus on expanding the Diageo brands into more frozen options, on-menu and on-premise, meats and seafood, salty snacks, desserts, coffee and more.”
For the Diageo family of brands, which includes Guinness, Baileys and Captain Morgan, Beanstalk reports that popular licensing deals from the past year for Baileys included Ciao Bella Gelato for flavoured gelato and Turn for liqueur-filled and non- alcoholic chocolate truffles. This year, Beanstalk plans to focus on expanding the Diageo brands into more frozen options, on-menu and on-premise, meats and seafood, salty snacks, desserts, coffee and more.
Beanstalk is still in the early stages of developing licensing programmes for Godiva, Turtles and Flipz; however, the agency is looking to extend the brands into food and beverage categories including ice cream, frozen novelties, beverages, baking, snacks, desserts and on-menu. For Filippo Berio, the agency is looking to add Italian-inspired products such as pasta, pasta sauces, dressings, bread and olives. Finally, Seltzer Licensing has grown its robust food and beverage portfolio with brands like Breyers, Klondike, Popsicle, Good Humor, Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen, Del Monte and Campbell’s, among many others.
Key highlights from Seltzer’s licensing programme from the past several years include Unilever, which has unveiled an assortment of co-branded ice creams including Oreo and Reese’s to 15-plus countries around the world. The agency has also been focused on helping its clients use licensing as a solution for product format and category extensions domestically.
In 2018, Seltzer Licensing will continue to put an emphasis on international licensing as well as an overall focus on strategic/seamless food-to-food licensing extensions. The agency will also put an increased focus on brands like Campbell’s, Unilever and Del Monte, among others.
Food and beverage licensing, when done right, remains a highly lucrative category and one that continues to see growth.
“Food and beverage licensing, when done right, remains a highly lucrative category and one that continues to see growth as more food and beverage brands view licensing as a real alternative to self or third-party manufacturing for product format and category extensions,” says Stu Seltzer, president, Seltzer Licensing Group. “That said, recent retail trends and industry consolidation have led to limited shelf space and a smaller pool of prospective partners with adequate capabilities and quality. As such, food and beverage licensing, now more than ever before, requires a very strategic approach in order to ensure success and mitigate the inherent risks, which is why an agency like ours specializing in food and beverage licensing can really add value.”
This post was written by Brand Licensing Europe brand director Anna Knight. BLE takes place 9-11 October 2018 at Olympia London. It is the leading event in Europe to discover what’s new in licensing and meet future business partners. This year’s theme is F&B and visitors can register for free at www.brandlicensing.eu