EUGENE, Ore. – Triangle Graphics has been around in Eugene since 1976. Owner John Henzie says they became licensed by the University of Oregon in 1992 to use the school’s official trademarked logos.
Henzie says they print UO apparel for businesses in Oregon as well as student and faculty groups on campus.
Each year, he says they pay the university around $20,000 to $25,000 in royalties.
But change is in the O.
The University of Oregon is changing their licensing agreement and came out with a proposal last week for businesses. Beginning in July 2014, anyone who wants to use the university’s trademarked logos must guarantee the UO a minimum of $500,000 in royalties every year.
“There’s no company in Oregon other than Nike that can do that,” said Henzie.
Matthew Dyste is the director of marketing and brand management at the UO.
He said these changes come from a comprehensive review of their program looking at how they manage their trademark licensing program. Businesses will be given until June 21 to submit their bids for licensing.
“The successful bidder will get a number of exclusive rights that will allow them to leverage the University of Oregon brand and the name and hopefully achieve tremendous sale and spread the good word of the ducks well beyond the state, nationally internationally,” said Dyste.
Currently, there are over 100 businesses licensed to use the Oregon logos. Under the current system, businesses need to provide at least $2,000 minimum, which is their annual guaranteed minimum royalty requirement.
“If we get a successful bidder, we will have fewer companies involved in our licensing business but generating additional revenue for the institution,” said Dyste.
Henzie is worried the new licensing proposal will effect small businesses like his. “They’re looking to increase sales nationally, internationally. They’re not looking for an Oregon company,” he said.
Henzie questions what will happen to a segment of his clientele like student groups, club sports and departments at the UO who order custom apparel. “They need turnaround in a week or two, and they need the ability to do small orders. None of these things are in the capabilities with a national company and how that works is very much up in the air,” he said.
After June 21, the University of Oregon will review all bids. If they choose a winning bidder or bidders, Henzie said they will begin contract negotiations with that company.