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Fashion Licensing, Essay Example

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A licensing agreement allows the user (licensee) to use intellectual property rights such as copyrights, patents, and trademarks in exchange for compensation to the owner (licensor) of the intellectual property for a particular period of time (Lawyers.com). An example would be payment by Target to Isaac Mizrahi for selling products under the Isaac Mizrahi brand.

Michael Kors is an American fashion designer who started his career at French boutique Lothar’s and later introduced the first women collection under his namesake brand in May 1981. Michael Kors company went bankrupt in 1990 and after recovering from the bankruptcy process, Kors launched a low-priced line called KORS. In 1997, he became the creative director of French fashion label Celine and held the position for six years. He also used the time to expand his own brand and introduced his menswear line between 1997 and 2003. Kors won the Menswear Designer of the Year Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America in 2003 and in 2004, joined hit TV show Project Runway where his popularity as a judge also promoted his namesake brand (Biography). Michael Kors sold stake in his brand to outside investors while the company was still privately held in 2011 (Kosman and Covert) and took the company public in December later that year (Cowan). NYSE-listed company is now headquartered in New York.

Kors is now a household name due his TV show as well as his established client base that includes many celebrities such as Blake Lively, Kate Hudson, and even First Lady Michelle Obama. His personal appeal and popularity alone makes the brand worth licensing. In addition, he is also one of Anna Wintour’s favorite designers. Licensed items sold under the Michaek Kors brand include fragrances, eyewear, and watches.

References

Biography. Michael Kors. 15 November 2012 <http://www.biography.com/people/michael-kors-594228>.

Cowan, Lynn. Michael Kors Makes Stylish Debut. 16 December 2011. 15 November 2012 <http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204026804577100323430549942.html>.

Kosman, Josh and James Covert. Michael Kors sells minority stake in deal that values brand at $2.5B. 11 August 2011. 15 November 2012 <http://www.nypost.com/p/news/business/expensive_outfit_ZOjo1HRnE3jHcaVUeJ4L9J>.

Lawyers.com. Licensing Agreements. 15 November 2012 <http://intellectual-property.lawyers.com/intellectual-property-licensing/Licensing-Agreements.html>.

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