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  1. Craig H
    Jun 01 - 4:10 pm

    I couldn’t agree more! Having been the president of a global luxury brand that was entirely licensed, I can confirm – it IS intoxicating when the royalties are rolling in and the calls won’t stop about signing new categories. Problem is that just making the relationship third party doesn’t mean you no longer have an interest in what happens with the licensees. It just means that it’s a bit harder to find out the info you need to know about how your brand is doing.

    I’ve argued before that its BETTER for you to license precisely because it creates an explicit requirement to manage the brand promise rather that the implicit requirement that’s created when you own the division creating the products.

    I’m working on building a new brand group now that approaches brands they way you suggest – we’ve internally defined it as a BrandFirst Operating Model (I have to be careful – brand service agencies have TMs for similar terms). In the model, you have to determine what the brand is first, then align operations to deliver the brand promise to the consumers who want it in the most profitable arrangement possible.

    Often, it doesn’t make sense to enter a category yourself, and makes much more sense to license it. But you do have to be vigilant in managing the control of your most important asset.

    -C

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