Licensing operations refers to the processes to plan, develop and manage a new licensed business or program (that includes multiple licenses). Internal operations relate to licensor activities, while external operations relate to licensee activities. The coordination or alignment of the licensor’s procedures with the licensee’s procedures is essential to optimizing the relationship and business.
Licensor operating procedures should reflect strategy elements of the licensed business as well as governance of the licensing program. Typically, a stage-gate approach and process steps include: category evaluation and qualification; identification and selection of licensed partners; development of legal agreements; support of licensees in development business plans (e.g. commercialization, account development, marketing plan).
Licensee operating procedures for the new licensed business must include licensor involvement in the review and approval of plans, products, advertising, and other promotional materials. Licensors often provide guidelines and requirements within the License Agreement and other manuals or materials. Standard operating procedures and collaborative planning can further enhance the commercialization, sell-in and marketing efforts of the licensee.