By Leigh Ann Schwarzkopf
Several home décor manufacturers took home licensing awards at Licensing International’s recent annual awards program.
Licensing International’s Annual Excellence awards are meant to honor innovation and creativity in the way brands use licensing to further their goals, how licensees develop and bring those products to market, and how retailers creatively spotlight licenses on their shelves.
The Best Product-Home Décor category award went to Danish manufacturer of playful room décor, Room Copenhagen, for its Lego Home collection. Built in oak as an homage to Lego’s early days as a wooden toy brick maker, the life-size décor spans picture frames, wall hangers, book racks and desk drawers. Some items are stackable.
Ukonic, a UK-based manufacturing resource for licensed home accent items, won Best Product-Appliances, Housewares, Electronics for a Corporate Brand for its Xbox Series X Mini-Fridge. Based on years of gamers spoofing the size of the large gaming console (comparing it to a full-size refrigerator), and Microsoft’s ability to take the razzing in stride, Ukonic launched a console look-alike mini-fridge at Target in October 2021. The personal cooler features removable interior shelves, has a capacity to fit 12 soft drink bottles, and includes a USB port on the front for charging other personal devices.
Home goods was a key category for expansion during 2021 for the Victoria & Albert Museum, which won the Best Licensed Brand- Museum, Art, and Design award. V&A licensees include furniture designer Sofas & Stuff, window covering resource Blinds 2Go, and bone china maker Richard Brendon.
“This year’s winners in the home décor and appliances, housewares, and electronics categories demonstrated a deep understanding of the power of brands and the power of licensing to launch products and programs with lasting appeal,” said Maura Regan, president of Licensing International.
“Following several years stuck inside because of the pandemic, the home décor and housewares categories are more important to consumers than ever. The global licensing industry responded to this growing demand with creativity and innovation, which made determining the winners of the 2022 Excellence Awards incredibly difficult,” she said.
Leigh Ann Schwartzkopf is the co-founder of Project Partners Network and a licensing expert.