Borrowed feathers

Did you ever come across a situation where your child might ask for merchandise with a Super Man or Barbie on it? Ever wondered how the character came up on that merchandise. The concept of getting the character on a cup or pencil is through the art of Br

Brand Licensing in simple terms means progression of crafting a contractual agreement between a company owning a brand name who allows others to produce and supply products carrying the brand name for an definite period of time. For instance, if an individual owning a garment house wants to promote his trade by manufacturing a Garfield collection, then he has to take a prior permission from Paws Inc. to do so. The circle from taking permission, creating the product and putting it up at a shelf is all a part of brand licensing. Kelvyn Gardner, Managing Director, LIMA- UK explains the procedure stating, “Licensing is a fairly simple business. At the top we have people who create and own an intellectual business company, a name or a television house who might sell licenses themselves with their own infrastructures like Disney or Warner Brothers. Other creators use third party agents or agencies to do the same. It is probably put across in a way that when you would think of selling your house, you might sell it yourself or get in touch with a realtor who is a specialist in the field. In the business of borrowed feathers as I may proudly put it across, there is abundant opportunity for all, as perceived the new dimension has been the most publicised topic of any business event.” Gardner who was in India as the Chairperson to the Brand Licensing Conference by Franchise India sees immense potential in the field and opines that it is not necessary that only a small brand house requires a brand licensing effort, big or small, each one needs to grow and strengthen its ground.

Are retailers more at risk or gain? 
Brand licensing was once proposed to be a progression of risking a brand name’s future. There are possibilities of complete brand damage and repercussions are how a retailer might feel at first. However, when looked upon by Nicholas Bloom, Associate Vice President, The BeanStalk Group, the risk seems nothing at all. He believes that there is absolutely no risk to a licensor or a licensee if the procedure is done correctly, with the right diligence, a carefully constructed strategic plan and prudent selection of partners, brand licensing cannot be a risky business at all. The practice has been analysed by those who have not seen the aspect as a perfect opportunity to success. However, mindsets are changing. The much talked about 3 Idiots, Wake Up Sid, Ghajini and even Dhoom 2 had series of clothes which could be nothing less then a boom for all- the brand houses, the stars and the star struck fans.

Scope for the Indian market
India as an upcoming hub for all the businesses is getting acknowledged in the international markets also. It is not only a particular retailer who might be keen on a tie up with companies into brand licensing but even the clientele who look forward in seeing merchandise with a rock star, a cartoon figure or simply a name to associate with from the movies or sports. There are patrons in India, be it kids or adults who are also fascinated by celebrity or a character to be associated with and brand licensing is the perfect solution to it. 

Brand licensing is a great concept to embrace as it helps drive consumer traffic and boost sales. To conclude we will say that ones who seek opportunity to make a mark for their brand, there is nothing better than borrowing a feather from an already soaring bird in the sky.

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