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"Latin America is an important market for licensing and every time more and more brands are realizing about this"

Marco Guzmán, Licensing Manager Latin America at Discovery International


Discovery Enterprises International (DEI) is a company specialised in nonfiction content which has more than 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers in 180 countries around the world. Marco Guzmán is the DEI Licensing Manager in Latin America.

Discovery International is the world's leading in nonfiction audiovisual content. What licenses generates this type of content?
The strongest  license in  Discovery International is Home Video through its two main brands: Discovery and Animal Planet.
Another category that benefits from audiovisual content is Promotions, because of the high perceived value that DVD’s have for consumers. Thanks to the wide variety of audiovisual content we have, we can offer an interesting premium for different industries consumers through the DVDs.

What factors are determining when choosing which elements of the catalog are licensable?
The most important factor to consider is the overall strategy planned for brands.

Which are the Discovery licenses with better performance?
It depends much on the territory. For consumer products, Animal Planet and Doki (Discovery Kids Spoke character!), while for Home Video, the best license is Discovery. Also Discovery Expedition and Discovery Explore Your World will be known and important at a regional level.

In which product categories this licenses register the best performance?
Animal Planet has been very important in Mexico at a promotional level, especially because of the sensitivity of humans towards animals, besides the advantage of being able to link to a green brand, which is a big plus for the brand itself.
Doki is popular throughout the region, particularly in Colombia, Brazil and Chile: its performance is very good in all product categories, especially in Apparel and Back to School.

What are the licensing objectives of Discovery International?
We have a uniform approach in all territories in Latin America that can be summarized in increasing our brands visibility and penetration,
and strategically choosing our partners to develop quality products for all territories. Within this strategy is implied working near the
retailers to keep them informed of the attributes of our brands.

Regarding the licensing market in Latin America, what turnover is generated by licensing in the region?
According to EPM Communications and Licensing International Merchandisers' Association (LIMA), the worldwide licensing industry generates 150 billion dollars in retail sales and 9 billion dollars in royalties.
However, while the U.S./Canada, Europe and Asia are respectively 66%, 15% and 11% share of the market, Latin America only represents the 2.7%, according to EPM Communications.

What are the most important licensing markets in the region?
Mexico and Brazil, thanks to its market size, are the most important, although areas such as Colombia, Peru, Chile and Panama have also good projections.

In which product categories licensing has a major presence? And in which the least?
This depends highly on the development level of the distribution channels and its local industries, but in general terms, the categories with more licensing presence are Apparel, Toys and Back to School, the latter two being great exhibitors for licensed brands as seasonal displays in all distribution channels are very strong.
Categories such as Publishing and Promotions depend greatly on the level of market development and local customs.

What are most important properties in Latin America? And the most significant sources of properties?
Again, it depends much on the territories and maturity: licenses not always are released simultaneously in all countries, and different country consumers do not always react the same way. An important factor which has to be taken into account is where are based the companies headquarters in the region, which is related with the brands exposure level towards every market, at least when we talk about brands that are not in vogue and have a much longer life than the ones that are in vogue.
We must also take into account other factors such as economic conditions, consumer habits in different countries, targets, etc..

What are the strengths of the licensing market in the region?
Among the strengths we highlighted the potential consumer markets: licensing is a powerful and well accepted marketing tool, and it is a major differentiator between products. Brands create bonds with its consumers, and Latin American consumers are not an exception. The licensing supports this link into products and this results in increased sales.

And its weaknesses?
The economic level of consumers, the high level of competition between brands and, in some cases, distribution channels, which represent a limit for brand placement or launch.

What is the expected evolution for the licensing market in Latin America?

The licensing market is closely related to the level of consumption. If we rely on this point, and speaking at regional level, the market will grow, as it is estimated that by the end of this year Latin America will have an economic growth close to 3.5% and in 2013, close to 4%, according to the Inter-American Development Bank.
Latin America is an important region for the licensing market thanks to its consumption potential, and increasingly all brands are realizing

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