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Licensee, License Do

Is your business ready for the boost that comes from licensing?

This story appears in the July 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Procuring a license is a great way to power up your business, says Antonio Sarabia II, an attorney specializing in intellectual property and contracts. To know if you're ready, evaluate your company's financial strength prelicense. If you're barely making it, it's probably not a good time to become a licensee--it's not a balm for a bad bottom line, notes Sarabia. It can, however, help take a strong startup to another level.

Licensing works for almost any kind of manufacturing business where brand recognition is important-apparel, housewares, accessories and so on, notes Sarabia. Even service businesses, like hair salons or lube and tuneup stations, can benefit from advertising an established brand name on the door. The key is to make sure the product you want to license makes sense within your industry and experience. "You need to build on your strengths," notes Sarabia.

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