Today’s smart business operators are including a licensing program as part of their business strategy. It’s a strategy you can use to expand your business quickly. Rather than spending the time and money to create and promote new products or services, you can put your IP assets to work generating new revenues.
Your business IP is a flexible asset that can be used in many ways. One way is to license your IP into new industries or for new use applications to create additional revenues for little or no additional cost. Plus you get the added benefit of increasing your company value, reaching new customers and expanding your competitive footprint.
It doesn’t matter your business or what type of IP you own, if it solves a problem, lowers costs, increases profits or gives you a leg up on the competition, there’s a creative way to license it. Here’s some quick case studies on how three different types of businesses – a productivity consultant, an event planning company and a restaurant operator – used licensing to expand and grow their businesses:
- Professional Know-How and Trademark (International Expansion): An international consulting company specializing in leadership and sales development, expanded its business internationally with 50 licensees and over 250 consultants. The company licenses rights to its brand name and suite of proprietary consulting tools for effective solutions to improve business performance.
- Proprietary Website Technology (White Label Branding): An event planning company developed an on-line event planning platform. It opened up its revenue streams by licensing this technology to other companies. They customized the platform for the licensee so their customers could plan a party using the licensees “branded” planning products.
- Trade Secrets and Trademarks (Brand Extension): A successful restaurant operator published his first cookbook, and quickly followed it with a line of sauces and grilling spices. After publishing a second book, he diversified his revenue by licensing a TV show, food products, and a second restaurant.
Licensing out your IP is an effective strategy for generating additional revenues from your IP. By licensing out your IP, your company generates income from the “unused portions” of your IP. You exploit other markets by allowing the licensee to use your IP in a different market.
Your business IP is the power that keeps your business moving forward. You can use it to increase revenues, lower overhead costs and reduce your financial risks. It’s a sustainable and highly renewable resource that is your greatest competitive advantage – if you know how to manage it for maximum return at every stage of its life cycle.
Rand Brenner is an IP professional whose passion is helping inventors, startups, and businesses of all sizes use licensing to turn their IP into income-producing products, services, and technologies. His decades of experience run the gamut from medical devices to food technology to consumer products. He’s licensed some of the biggest Hollywood entertainment blockbusters including the Batman Movies (1 and 2), and the number one kid’s action TV show, the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Rand speaks about licensing and is a featured speaker at investment conferences, trade shows, colleges and startup events. He’s a published writer with articles appearing in several prestigious trade magazine including The Licensing Journal, Intellectual Property Magazine, and License India. Rand also mentors at the Cal State Fullerton School of Business and Economics and is a judge for their startup business plan competitions.