Brand Licensing Europe announces the Kelvyn Gardner License This! competition

Published on: 21st September 2021

License This! has been renamed the Kelvyn Gardner License This! competition in tribute to Kelvyn, with entries closing 11th October. 

Brand Licensing Europe has paid tribute to licensing legend Kelvyn Gardner, who passed away at the start of this year, by renaming License This! to the Kelvyn Gardner License This! Competition and nominating Thursday 18th November (day two of the event) as ‘Colour for Kelvyn’ day.

The Kelvyn Gardner License This! Competition has been helping brands and designers to break into the licensing industry for over a decade. Applications for this year’s entries close on Monday 11th October, and the competition final will take place in-person at BLE on Friday 19th November.

BLE has now added a third award category, in partnership with Mojo Nation, to provide a valuable springboard for inventors and designers keen to break into the sector. Applicants for the product design category will be asked to submit a design for a desktop product, such as a mouse, coffee mug, desk tidy or USB stick, drawing inspiration from Aardman’s award-winning IP, Morph. Further details on how to apply for this category can be found at or by emailing

The team has also unveiled this year’s judging line up, which features several new faces, as well as the welcome return of Start Licensing Director Ian Downes, who is stepping into the enormous shoes left empty by former chair Kelvyn Gardner.

  • Ian Downes, director, Start Licensing – chair
  • Phil King, managing director, Trademark Products
  • Sabrina Segalov, senior international licensing manager, Sanrio Global
  • Emily Aldridge, head of global licensing, Abysse Corp
  • Dan Grant, licensing director, Danilo
  • Teri Niadna, managing director, Brandgenuity
  • Sarah Ward, chief executive, The Giftware Association
  • Clare Piggott, managing director, Larkshead Media
  • Billy Langsworthy, co-founder, Mojo Nation & Brands Untapped
  • Rob Goodchild, commercial director, Aardman
  • Sarah Lawrence, director, This is Iris
  • Jehane Boden Spiers, founder, Jehane
  • Karen Hewitt, buying director,
  • Maxine Lister, head of licensing, Natural History Museum
  • Dale Boreham, senior design manager, Moonpig

Colour For Kelvyn

The second day of BLE, which takes place at Excel London from 17th-19th November, will be called Colour for Kelvyn day. Attendees are invited to wear bright colours in honour of Kelvyn’s love for eye-catching jackets and make a donation in his name to industry charity The Light Fund.

“Kelvyn was someone that I – and everyone else in the licensing industry – genuinely loved and truly admired,” commented Anna Knight, VP of Licensing, Informa Markets. “He chaired License This! from day one and was a massive advocate for making the sector accessible to everyone, particularly new blood with exciting ideas. He was so generous with his time, not only through the judging process but also with the mentoring he offered the finalists and winners, that it seems only fitting it’s now known as the Kelvyn Gardner License This! Competition.”

Anna added: “Colour for Kelvyn day is obviously inspired by his love of a colourful jacket, which seemed to get more outrageous every year, and also by his advocacy of and support for The Light Fund; it’s a really special charity that Kelvyn was always keen to help. We also want to say a huge thank you to Kelvyn’s wife and children – Michelle, Regan and Eliot – for enabling us to honour him in this manner and for joining us at BLE this year to launch Colour for Kelvyn day at 9am on Thursday 18th November. I can’t wait to see the hall filled with a rainbow of colours in his memory.”


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