UNCG Trademark Licensing Policies and Procedures
Introduction - UNCG Trademark Licensing
UNCG, along with hundreds of other academic institutions across the country, works with The Collegiate Licensing Company, CLC, to ensure the use and rights to our University’s marks are protected. The CLC Consortium consists of more than 180 universities, bowl games, conferences, the NCAA and the Heisman Trophy. Based in Atlanta, CLC provides its member institutions the expertise, resources, and experience necessary to maximize licensing revenue potential through the power of consolidation.
Any company interested in manufacturing product that will be sold to consumers through retail distribution channels (including Internet) must obtain a license through The Collegiate Licensing Company, CLC. All companies must complete the application and the requirements for licensing as outlined by CLC. CLC will communicate all information to the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department. Based on the information provided, the University will determine whether a company will or will not be granted a license. The retail market for collegiate merchandise in general and UNCG merchandise specifically has become saturated in certain product categories. Therefore, licenses may not be granted to new companies in certain categories.
The basic requirements for licensing include completing the application, providing proof of product liability insurance (amount is based on the product category), signing a license agreement (and authorized manufacturer agreements if needed), signing the labor code agreement, paying the applicable advance, getting all designs and products approved, and reporting royalties on the sale of UNCG merchandise.
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro reserves the right to prohibit use of its trademarks with certain issues and products, such as alcohol, tobacco, candidates for public office, those products that infringe upon another entity’s trademarks or would be considered in poor taste by the general public. The University will not license products that do not meet minimum standards of quality, are in bad taste, are dangerous, or carry high liability risks.
Use of a UNCG mark with an organization name implies association with the University. Therefore, only those student organizations that are officially recognized by the SGA and official campus departments are allowed to use UNCG trademarks in conjunction with their organization’s name.
Any product bearing UNCG trademarks or a specific departmental logo should be purchased from licensed manufacturers. Using an officially licensed company to manufacture a product ensures that the company has provided the correct product liability insurance and signed the University’s labor code of conduct agreement. A list of licensees by product category can be obtained here.
To ensure consistency in the use of the UNCG name and logos, all product designs must be approved by the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department before production. In most cases, the manufacturer can submit the design for approval on behalf of the organization/department. However, if there are questions concerning the design, the organization’s representative may contact the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department directly.
Recognized student organizations and campus departments may include sponsor names/logos on event promotional items in conjunction with the University marks under the following conditions:
• The student organization/department’s name must be included to communicate that the relationship is a partnership with a particular group and not an endorsement by the University as a whole.
• The use of the University marks in conjunction with sponsor names/logos is considered a promotional item whether sold or give away.
• Based on the scope of the program, a rights fee may be assessed.
In determining exemptions from royalty payment, consideration is given to the mission of the licensing program and the many constituents it serves. Given these criteria, the University is not required to pay royalties to itself for purchases of services or products that are a necessity for faculty and staff to perform their job (i.e. equipment, services, uniforms, educational tools). However, the university attempts to avoid unfair competition with other retailers and service providers and therefore, does not exempt itself from paying royalties on the purchase of goods that are to be resold to members or to the general public, regardless of the purpose of the sale.
Affiliated UNCG student organizations may use University marks for identification and fund raising within the guidelines of University policy.
Printed materials for use on campus, such as signs, brochures, handbills, advertisements, banners, and handouts, do not need prior approval as long as uses are in accordance with official University logo usage guidelines. Advance approval through UNCG Trademark Licensing is required for any materials intended for off campus distribution bearing University marks.
Affiliated student groups may place University marks on web sites housed on University owned servers, in accordance with University policy regarding web sites.
Affiliated student organizations may purchase merchandise bearing University marks, but all such purchases must be from licensed manufacturers. A list of current UNCG officially licensed vendors is available from UNCG Trademark Licensing. Affiliated organizations may also bring designs to the Office of Trademarks and Licensing and seek advance approval.
If the merchandise is for the student members of the organization, the vendor will not have to pay royalties on the items. This should be reflected in the price to the organization. If the merchandise is for resale to anyone else, even as a fund-raiser for charity, royalties will need to be paid.
Use of UNCG marks by organizations that are not affiliated with the University, will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Below are the basic guidelines that will be followed:
• The University recognizes that there are many groups that support the University from academics to athletics (i.e. alumni and booster clubs). However, any group wanting to use the University trademarks on product for its membership or for resale should purchase the product from a current University licensee. By supporting the University’s licensing initiatives, organizations can assist the University by ensuring that product bearing the University logo is of the highest quality and meets all insurance and contractual requirements. The licensee is responsible for getting the design approved by the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department and remitting the University’s royalty on the wholesale price of the product.
• Businesses may not establish a permanent statue or mural that includes the University trademarks or likeness without written permission from the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department.
• Businesses may use the University trademarks in a non-permanent fixture (i.e. window painting, removable lettering on marquees) supporting a University event.
• Businesses or organizations may not use the trademarks of the University in any type of advertisements, on websites or on banners, etc., without written permission from the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department.
• Individuals or organizations may not utilize the University’s trademarks in conjunction with a candidate for political office or policy/legislative issue without written permission from the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department.
• Individuals may not use the University trademarks on a website without written permission from the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department.
• The University does not allow its trademarks to be used in conjunction with not-for-profit organizations.
• Businesses may not produce merchandise for resale or give-a-way that utilizes the University’s trademarks and its name and/or logo without written permission from the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department.
• Businesses may not use the University trademarks to promote its products or services in print advertising, radio or television without written approval from the UNCG Trademark Licensing Department.
• Licensees or retailers of University merchandise may print their name on the product. However, the logo or name may be only 1 ½ inches by 1 ½ inches in size. To maintain consistency, this coincides with NCAA rules regarding company branding on uniforms etc.
• Rights fees and royalties for the use of the University trademarks in all instances may be assessed.