Licensing and the Evolution of Retailing Landscape

November 2016

The retail landscape in licensing is vital since it is the extension of the licensing world into real life. Consumers have become increasingly confident shopping online at the expense of brick-and-mortars, transforming global shopping patterns. The evolution of e-commerce is causing a shift in product selection as non-traditional channels increase their licensed merchandise lines, and single brand and pop-up stores expand. As omnichannel becomes increasingly important, s- and m-commerce thrive.

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Retailing: Pendulum shift to Asia Pacific

The retail landscape in licensing is incredibly important since it is perceived as the extension of the licensing world into real life. Global retailing sales recorded 3% growth in 2015 in constant terms. Steady constant value terms growth is expected to continue over 2016 to 2020. Asia Pacific is projected to account for 36% of global retailing sales by 2020, up from less than 34% in 2015.

Internet sales reach new heights

Internet retailing (e-commerce) outperformed other retail channels consistently throughout the review period recording a CAGR of 21% over 2010-2015. Across all the key industries for licensing businesses, including apparel and footwear, traditional toys and games, beauty and personal care, home and garden, personal accessories and packaged food, the share of internet retailing rose between 2010 and 2015. It is also projected to be the most dynamic channel over 2015-2020 posting a 12% CAGR.

Marketplaces come of age

Thanks to years of infrastructure investment, many e-commerce companies have begun to grow their marketplace businesses, providing a well-established site where third party merchants can sell their goods. Top global marketplaces in 2015 included Alibaba, Amazon, eBay, and Rakuten.

Evolution of e-commerce: Product selection shifts

While marketplaces increase the ease of doing business online, shoppers become more adventurous making an online purchase. Consecutively, product availability increases, and more licensed merchandise becomes accessible by a rising number of consumers.

China and India offer both opportunities and challenges

In terms of internet retailing, China and India are unique markets where the licensing industry faces an entirely different set of e-retailers. Therefore, both licensors and licensees need to adjust their strategies accordingly. In 2015, China became the world’s largest internet retailing market, overtaking the US.


Key findings (1)
Key findings (2)
Key findings (3)

Retailing: Global Outlook

Global outlook
Global performance: Non-store retailing drives growth
Pendulum shift to Asia Pacific
Global retailing landscape: Top global players
Retail space: Licensor’s partners

Internet Sales Reach New Heights

E-commerce posts extraordinary growth
The dawn of the internet as a retail force has already come
Marketplaces come of age
How popular marketplaces are serving their regions’ needs
Apparel and footwear digital global expansion
The evolution of internet retailing: Product selection begins to shift
Rise of internet sales: Impact on licensing
China and India offer opportunities as well as challenges
E-commerce heavyweights try their hand at fashion
Apparel and footwear: Retailer growth strategies

Key Trends Shaping Retailing: Impact on Licensing

Store-based retailing still important
Direct-to-retail gains popularity
Non-traditional retailers becoming an important channel in licensing
Private label: Opportunities and challenges for licensing (1)
Private label : Opportunities and challenges for licensing (2)
Single brand concepts expand
“Pop-up” stores thrive as changing times force retailers to innovate
“Retailtainment”: Shopping and leisure h and in hand
Bricks and clicks: The future is “ phygital ”
Omnichannel retailing could hold the key to success
Distribution: Omnichannel - Connecting the dots

Social Platforms Embrace Social Commerce

The world is ready for s-commerce
Huge social media base offers global e-commerce audience
The digital revolution in retailing
Emerging-developed market disparity in s-commerce uptake
By 2030, s-commerce can target half of the global populace

The Rise and Rise of M-Commerce

Mobile: Consumers ready to shop and socialise on the move
M-commerce: Another path to purchase
Smartphones become mainstream worldwide
M-commerce is particularly popular in emerging countries
Why mobile matters even more moving forward
Mobile internet in 2030: The Asian age


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