March Madness basketball tournament boosts participating colleges’ sales of licensed retail merchandise

The Collegiate Licensing Company reports 2012 sales from licensed collegiate retail items came in at $4.62 billion. The Licensing Letter reports this revenue is spit 65%-35% between apparel/non-apparel items. As basketball fans worldwide watch March Madness, the NCAA tournament that determines the national championship for Division 1 schools in the U.S., cash registers ring for participating schools.

Forbes reports George Mason University saw an increase of 143% in licensing revenue in the same year they made it to the Final Four.  Virginia Commonwealth University had their largest royalty grossing quarter in school history right after their successful participation in the tournament.

This year, as reported on Grimes & Battersby’s IP blog, longshot Florida Gulf Coast University advanced to the final sixteen teams, and their March 2012 to March 2013 licensed merchandise sales rose 10-fold, to $200,000.