License Magazine has released its annual list of the 101 Leading Licensors, and Marvel held its #4 slot, growing from $4 billion to $5 billion in retail sales based on its brands.  That keeps it in pretty heady company, with Disney, Warner Bros, and Nickelodeon/Viacom in the top three slots (in order).  And that's ahead of such licensing juggernauts as the NFL and Lucas Licensing (which grew from $1.2 billion to $3 billion last year). 


Other companies with implications for pop culture retailers include Sanrio, which was tied with Marvel last year but slipped to fifth after sales of its products grew to 'only' $4.2 billion in 2005.  4Kids, which is the licensor for Yu-Gi-Oh!, Magical DoReMi, and One Piece, was in 13th, at $2.8 billion in sales of products carrying its brands.  20th Century Fox, with Family Guy, Simpsons, Napoleon Dynamite, etc., was in 21st, with $1.5 billion in sales.  Pokemon USA, now on its own, was in 23rd, with a staggering $1.3 billion in sales in its 9th year!  Peanuts is #28, at $1.2 billion.  Viz is #62, with $262 million in sales of its brands.