Versace, the Italian fashion house, was purchased by Michael Kors in September 2018, for $2.2 billion, despite suffering a loss in 2016, which was the year the offer and negotiations for its sale begun. It was reported that other luxury brands sought to buy the brand name and the ‘medusa-head’ logo, which to the public, represents luxury. The sale was possible because Versace had meticulously built its brand by protecting its Intellectual Property (IP) rights in all of its creations including its name, logo and designs.
IP gives exclusive protection to creative works. It can be sold, purchased, licensed or destroyed and has varied forms such as copyright, trademark, patents and designs. A proprietor’s ability to exploit his IP is closely linked to his ability to protect the same. Original work may be protected and profits maximized in the following ways:
Copyright grants the creator of an original work, exclusive right to its use and distribution for a period of time. An original work attracts automatic copyright, however, further protection can be obtained through registration at the Nigerian Copyright Commission.
Trademark is a recognizable sign, design or expression which identifies products or services of a particular source from others. It can be registered at the Trademarks, Patents and Design Registry, (Registry). Trademark registration is territorial and as such the registration of a mark in Nigeria only provides the owner with protection within Nigeria.
Patent can be registered at the Registry. It is an exclusive right granted for an industrial invention.
Design can be registered at the Registry. It consists of two or three-dimensional features or a combination of both, to be multiplied by industrial process.
Maximize your earnings; protect your IP rights!
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