ATLANTA — March 4, 2019 — University of Cincinnati, in collaboration with its exclusive trademark licensing agent, IMG College Licensing, today announced an agreement with Hanesbrands Inc. to serve as the University’s primary licensee for apparel products. The new deal covers Cincinnati-branded men’s, women’s, youth, and infant/toddler apparel across all retail channels, and ensures the University has greater control over the supply chain along with stability in licensing income over the next six years.
In addition to the new agreement with Hanesbrands, Cincinnati will continue its partnership with Under Armour, the exclusive supplier of uniforms and apparel for the University’s varsity teams, coaches, and staff. Additionally, semi-exclusive headwear partnerships that are currently in place will remain, as well as programs with other best-in-class licensees in select product categories to ensure a robust selection of merchandise for Bearcats fans and consumers.
While Hanesbrands has been a Cincinnati licensee since 1992 under its Champion label, the new agreement represents a continued effort by the Cincinnati licensing program to strategically manage the University’s brand to provide top-quality products for Bearcats fans while securing long-term brand value for the University.
“As the retail landscape continues to evolve, especially with the growth in online sales, it’s important that we partner with best-in-class licensees, like Hanesbrands, that are committed to growing the Cincinnati brand and delivering additional resources back to the University,” said Martin Ludwig, Cincinnati’s director of trademarks & licensing. “After working with our partners at IMG College Licensing to analyze proposals from companies interested in a stronger relationship with the University, we decided Hanesbrands and its family of top apparel companies was the best fit for our brand and meet the needs of retailers providing great apparel for our constituents.”
On top of partnering with a global brand, the agreement provides the University a minimum guarantee that ensures more than a 20 percent growth in apparel royalties following the 8 percent growth the University experienced during the past three years. The University will also gain access to academic resources through internships, participation by Hanesbrands executives in University programs and projects, and additional resources to develop, grow, and merchandise the presence of Cincinnati product in the marketplace. Hanesbrands will also fund annual corporate social responsibility (CSR) trips for Cincinnati staff to visit factories making licensed merchandise to review production and ensure compliance with University workplace codes of conduct.
“We are pleased to enter into this new agreement with the University of Cincinnati and are committed to developing the best apparel program for Bearcats fans,” said John Fryer, president, Sports Apparel, at Hanesbrands. “With more than 25 years of experience working with the Cincinnati brand, this new agreement allows us to focus our resources on improving designs and styles in true partnership with the University.”
Cincinnati began strategically managing its brand through IMG College Licensing in 2005 with its first semi-exclusive program in the headwear category, followed with a mass channel exclusive with Knights Apparel, a division of Hanesbrands. Since that time, Cincinnati has pursued partnerships with licensees that are aligned with the brand goals of the University.
“The Cincinnati licensing program under Marty’s direction routinely leverages the data and resources we provide to maximize the University’s brand exposure and revenue,” said Cory Moss, senior vice president and managing director of IMG College Licensing. “This new agreement with Hanesbrands represents the next step in the evolution of Cincinnati’s brand management.”
The University’s trademark licensing program was established in 1987 to manage the commercial use of the University’s name and all identifying marks and images. A division within the Office of Administration & Finance, Trademarks & Licensing has generated more than $15 million in royalty income from the sale of officially licensed merchandise with UC’s brand, which the University uses to support scholarships.
Posted March 4, 2019
Source: University Of Cincinnati