fashion licensing

How fashion brands can license for growth

The beauty of owning a trending fashion brand, is the scope available to extend your brand into complementary new products and new consumer categories.  This is not a task that you as the brand owner need to create if you develop a comprehensive licensing programme.  Fashion licensing is the process of allowing your brand to be leveraged by other manufacturers, under your watchful eye, to engage with new consumers outside of your core fashion range that you produce.

There are many example of fashion licensing where a prominent designer or brand extends their brand reach and consumer products into new categories, new retailers and new international channels. Here is just one to help explain the licensing phenomenon:

Calvin Klein

The Calvin Klein brand launched in the late 1960’s with coats, then developed into a range of women’s leisurewear.  By 1977, the brand’s annual retail turnover had jumped to $30 million.  A rapid rise to fame but this was due to the brand’s inclusion of licensing.

While Calvin Klein continued with their core women’s leisurewear range, they had commenced licensing the brand into shoes, belts, sunglasses, furs, scarves and even sheets.  Deepening the product range and reach, the brand then licensed into jeans, cosmetics and menswear. Annual retail sales revenue from all branded products exceeded $100 million before the end of the decade.

The licensing revenue in the early 1970’s achieved $24,000 and by the end of the 1970’s was amassing over $7 million in royalty revenue for the Brand Owners.

Local Designer Fashion Licensing

So how is this relevant to a local domestic fashion brand?  Your brand is your greatest asset.  Every day you create innovative pieces to reproduce and retail for your loyal consumer base.  Over time your brand becomes more well known, stockists increase and you may even open your own stores.  Your time and money is focused on your core range and product offering.  While diversification into other apparel or accessories would be natural, sometimes the costs and risks can be prohibitive.

If your brand has influence and resonance, another party could leverage your intellectual property with licensing. Your IP is your brand, designs and copyright.  A licensee is given permission to design, manufacture and market your brand while paying you a royalty commission for these rights.

Your brand and the health of your business can benefit in many ways.  Licensing can increase your profit from creating new revenue streams, allows your brand to expand into complementary products, and to increase your brand marketing exposure and customer base.  Fashion licensing, when successfully managed, allows the Brand Owner and designers to control the brand use to deliver a consistent brand experience to consumers.

To successfully venture into licensing, control of your brand is mandatory.  Untapped Agency offers Trademarks Attorney services and is a Licensing Agent for Brand Owners, Licensees, Manufacturers and Retailers. We extend iconic brands, copyright, fashion, designs, innovations and trademarks into innovative, new consumer products, services and promotions.