Following the dollar-strewn trail blazed by the likes of Sony and Walt Disney Company, Procter & Gamble is moving into bigtime brand licensing.

The Cincinatti colossus is already well down the trail with brand licensing deals for Mr Clean (household gloves), Pantene (hair dryers) and Cover Girl (contact lens). The latest signing, last Thursday, was high profile vitamins peddler Pharmavite, maker of the Nature Made range. The deal links the magic pills to P&G’s top skincare brand Olay.

Gloats Pharmavite vice president of business development Tom Zimmerman: “It’s one of the top vitamin concepts we ever tested.” P&G ceo Alan G Lafley was equally enthusiastic: “We're approaching it brand by brand. We try to only select [licensees] products that enhance the brand.”

And it seems the practice is not just about piling-on incremental revenues, as Ben Jurin of industry publication The Licensing Letter, points out: “Every time a consumer uses a Pantene hair dryer, made by Panasonic, it cements the name with hair care. Licensing becomes another tool in P&G's marketing arsenal.”

Data sourced from: USA Today; additional content by WARC staff