Italy: Bologna Licensing Trade Fair Announces 17th Edition

With Bologna Children’s Book Fair and its general-industry Bologna Book Plus program having begun their annual programming and marketing operations, yet another component of the annual events related to young readers in the Emilia-Romagna has announced its 17th annual edition today (January 24): The Bologna Licensing Trade Fair/Kids runs April 8 to 11.

This, of course, is one of the reasons you may soon begin to feel you’re hearing about Bologna every day at this time of day. The multiplicity of sub-fairs and side-fairs means a growing level of announcements and requests for world publishing professionals’ attention, even as other events in other markets compete for the same visibility and with much the same tactic of layered branding.

The 2023 book fair overall—the trade show directed by Elena Pasoli—last year reached its 60th year with a reported 28,000 trade visitors and 1,500 from more than 100 countries.

The licensing show—which physically is set within the BolognaFiere complex—carries with it multiple events and repetition factors of its own. For example, this year the Bologna Licensing Trade Fair/Kids program will include:

  • A seventh edition of its Bologna Licensing Awards (with submissions accepted until January 31); in this sub-branding element, we find more information readily available in today’s media messaging than is offered in other area: jurors this year are to include Philippe Guinaudeau of the Brand Trends Group; Ian Hyder of Max Publishing; Helena Mansell-Stopher of Products of Change; Cristina Paesani, an art and fashion specialist; and Astrid Specht, editor of Toys and 1st Steps. Last year’s program awarded honors in 10 categories.
  • A fourth edition of “International Kids Licensing Days,” which presumably is sub-branding for the rights-trading meetings
  • A Licensing Business Lounge near the exhibition area and events room
  • A Spotlight on Audiovisual which is said to have a dedicated program and area
  • A licensing portfolio review program and carrying with it a sustainability theme with “special emphasis on the retail and fashion sectors”

For additional reading: Porter Anderson at Publishing Perspectives – Bologna