Corporate executive-turned-entrepreneur Bhavik Vora, Founder, Black White Orange discusses FMCG sector’s tilt towards licensed products. Black White Orange helps brands, celebrities, media and retailers create brand extension programmes to strengthen their relationship with the consumer. The company was founded by Bhavik Vora along with Mitali Desai and Diksha Mehta. The trio brings in combined experience of over 3 decades in the fields of licensing, marketing, retail, public relations and brand development; enabling them to bag one of the most impressive client portfolio.
How do you feel about FMCGs getting into licensing?
FMCG brands have long been working with character brands but it is something more now. This surge has been the result of increased fan following these characters. It creates a market pull when you attach these brands together and result in incremental sales of sorts. There is a lot of content coming out these days in terms of movies and serials; everybody wishes to cash on the buzz of these new releases. Like next year, 2020, Universal Studios has 4-5 big releases coming up. A lot of FMCG brands would want to tag along with the buzz and euphoria created around these characters.
Don’t you think the collaborations are age specific?
Yes, that depends on what category is our targeted audience. Forinstance, when aiming to attract kids as a category you’ll look for products that kids are interested in like chocolates, chips, handwash, sanitizer, ice-cream and such. Adults on the other hand associate with brands like Game of Thrones because they are more interested in consumer durable products like mobile covers. Mass brands look for properties like Baahubali which are expandable. When we used to manage Baahubali, we collaborated with Britannia and Reliance Fresh wherein they capitalized on the popularity of the brand.
What are some hot categories at the moment?
Confectionery, ready-to-eat snacks and QSRs like McDonald’s and such are big at the moment. The numbers involved are big too. For example Minions’ collab with Mondelez for Lickables and Gems Surprise is on the rise. It’s a multi-level promotion wherein you get free toys on purchase of Lickables and Gems as a part of their 1stwave; the product portfolio includes about 52 products. In the second layer of promotions people get a chance to meet the Minions at Universal Studios, Singapore. The promotion for this tie up has been going on for about 4-5 months now and will come to an end next month.
Why did Mondelez narrow down on this IP?
FMCG brands do their own research as to which characters are trending, they have agencies which does the research for them. It helps them define which characters are creating a pull in the market. It also depends on a lot of other factors; like we have close to 18 categories active on minions. Minions issomething that cuts across age groups and is popular amongst kids, adults and youth equally. So there is certain likeness across gender and age.
What are some trending IPs according to you?
From our portfolio- minions is doing extremely well, we had GOT which witnessed a huge demand during their final season, we also have the Hasbro portfolio including my little pony, transformers and such. These are the properties people have grown up with so there is a connection there. Generally speaking, Disney is always a classic, the Marvel portfolio is huge and a there’re a lot of local brands which are witnessing a surge in their demand.
Are there any other FMCG tie-ups in pipeline?
A lot of FMCG tie-ups are happening, I can’t say much because of the confidentiality as these products are not launched in the market yet. They are all going through design work at the moment. We’re getting into chocolates, confectionery, and personal care products. They are expected to be in the market in about 3-4 months.