FAQs on Sourcing Merchandise

We are committed to selecting licensees who agree to produce products under fair, safe, and humane working conditions and who demonstrate management processes that enable them to achieve progress toward implementation of these standards throughout their supply chain.

What are the steps for getting approval to use the UCLA name or trademark(s) on our merchandise?

  1. Refer to and follow the respective naming convention and graphic identity guidelines for Registered Campus Organizations, Registered Affiliated Organizations, Recognized Support Groups, and UCLA Units described below in this FAQ.
  2. Select a licensed vendor to produce your merchandise from the list of UCLA licensed vendors.

Read more on why use of a UCLA licensed vendor is required

  1. Complete the Internal Campus Request Form and submit your completed request form to UCLA Trademarks & Licensing for review and approval prior to production.

What things will slow down the processing of my request?

What is a “Registered Campus Organization”?

Registered Campus Organizations are any organization whose membership is predominantly comprised of UCLA students and/or personnel and who have obtained registered status with the University through SOLE, and who maintain compliance with all UCLA policies and procedures. Registered Campus Organizations act independently of the University and may not indicate or imply that it is acting on behalf of the University.

What is a “Registered Affiliated Organization”?

Affiliated Organizations are those groups officially supported by, advised by, or an entity of a UCLA department or program. Examples include UCLA club sports teams affiliated with UCLA Recreation, Greek organizations affiliated with UCLA Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, and the authorized student governments- – i.e. Graduate Student Association (GSA) and Under Graduate Student Association Council (USAC)—which are entities of .

 

Registered Affiliated Organizations are groups whose activities exclusively support the mission of UCLA, such as professional associations, employee organizations, athletic, cultural, and other interest groups.   Examples include UCLA club sports teams registered through UCLA Recreation, Greek letter organizations registered through UCLA Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, and Graduate Student Association (GSA), Under Graduate Student Association Council (USAC), and Student Media who are entities of ASUCLA.

What is a “Recognized Support Group”?

Recognized Support Groups are any group, organization, foundation, or association other than the UCLA Alumni Association or UCLA Foundation: (1) whose primary purpose is to provide assistance through fundraising, public outreach, and other activities in support of the University’s mission; or (2) whose representatives or activities make the activity indistinguishable from the University or (3) that acts as an agent of or intermediary for the University

Do Registered Campus Organizations, Registered Affiliated Organizations, and Recognized Support Groups need permission to use the UCLA name and related trademark on merchandise?

Yes. In accordance with UCLA Policy 110 there are licensing, naming convention and visual identity policies that apply and will need to be followed in order to ensure that your group’s merchandise request can be approved.

Do Registered Campus Organizations, Registered Affiliated Organizations, and Recognized Support Groups need to use UCLA licensed vendors to procure merchandise?

Yes. Products bearing any UCLA name or related marks, whether such product will be used for internal purposes by organization members or distributed to others, may only be produced by vendors who are licensed by the University through agreements managed by ASUCLA.

Read more on why use of licensed vendors is required »

Do Registered Campus Organizations, Registered Affiliated Organizations, and Recognized Support Groups need to comply with UCLA naming conventions and UCLA Brand Guideline?

Yes. However different requirements apply to Registered Campus Organizations, Registered Affiliated Organizations, and Recognized Support Groups. To help expedite your request to procure merchandise bearing your organization’s name, you will need to ensure that it complies with the appropriate naming conventions and visual identity requirements pertaining to your organization type as outlined in UCLA Policy 110.

What are the naming conventions and visual identity policies for Registered Campus Organizations?

In accordance with UCLA Policy 110 Registered Campus Organizations may only use the UCLA name or other names (e.g. “Bruin” or “Bruins”) as part of their own name for the purpose of geographical designation. Example, “Undergraduate English Association at UCLA” is acceptable. “UCLA Undergraduate English Association” is not acceptable. Such use of the UCLA name or other names may only appear in a plain text font. If your Registered Campus Organization has additional questions regarding these naming conventions and visual identity policies please contact your SOLE advisor.

  • Examples of the naming conventions to be followed by Registered Campus Organizations:
    • “[Group Name]at UCLA” format:
      e.g. Chess Club at UCLA
    • “Bruin [Group Name] at UCLA”
      e.g. Bruin Democrats at UCLA
    • “Bruins [stated purpose/interest]”
      e.g. Bruins for Peace
  • Use of UCLA official logos or other non-plain text fonts is prohibited:

What are the naming conventions and visual identity policies for Registered Affiliated Organizations and Recognized Support Groups?

Registered Affiliated Organizations and Recognized Support Groups may use the UCLA name and logo in a manner beyond that of a geographical designation, subject to university policies including Policy 110, UCLA Brand Guidelines, and the direction of their respective, affiliated/sponsoring campus department/unit.

Do UCLA campus departments and programs need permission to use the UCLA name & trademark on merchandise?

Yes. Key policies that apply to ensure your department’s UCLA merchandise request can be approved include:

  • Use Licensed Vendors: Placement of the UCLA name and related names and trademarks on any consumer goods, whether such merchandise will be used for internal purposes by the campus department or distributed to others, may only be performed by vendors who are licensed by the university through agreements managed by ASUCLA. This requirement applies universally including to all UCLA campus departments and programs. Read more on why use of licensed vendors is required.
  • Follow UCLA Brand Guidelines: Consistent with the Chancellor’s message that we all “speak with one voice” when representing UCLA, it is important that UCLA department and programs’ promotional products also comply with the UCLA Brand Guidelines.
  • Additional Permissions Required When Seeking to Include Third-Party Names/Logos: Any and all uses of the UCLA name and related names and abbreviations, unofficial and campus seals, logos and images in all contexts by, for or with a third-party, non-University entity require permission from the Administrative Vice Chancellor using this form. Unless such use is already provided for in a sponsorship contract reviewed and approved by the AVC, you will need to first obtain such approval before Trademarks & Licensing will approve designs bearing third party names or logos.

FAQs on UCLA Trademarks

What is a trademark?

Trademarks identify and distinguish the goods and/or services of one organization from those of another. Trademarks can be words, symbols, or designs, three-dimensional objects (as in packaging), colors, landmarks, sounds, or smells. A service mark is the same as a trademark except that it applies to a service rather than a product. Because registered trademarks and service marks are valuable assets, they must be used correctly to avoid dilution in the marketplace and vulnerability to potential cancelation.

What are the University’s trademarks?

UCLA trademarks include all UCLA campus names, UCLA department names (including abbreviations of these names) seals, logos, trademarks, service marks, and any other words, symbols, designs, three dimensional objects, colors, landmark, sound or smells used by UCLA, whether registered or unregistered, that identify and distinguish its goods and/or services from those of another (collectively, “UCLA Marks”).

Examples of UCLA Marks include, but are not limited to, “UCLA” word mark and logos, “UCLA Bruins” word mark and logos, “University of California Los Angeles” word mark, the UCLA Seal design, and Bruin mascot logos, and “Bruins” and “Bruin” word marks in certain jurisdictions and formats. Use of any UCLA Marks for any non-editorial purpose- whether or not such use is in the form of the University’s official logos and fonts or is depicted in alternative fonts or designs- requires UCLA’s permission via its designated authorities. See Policy 110 to review permissions required from the designated authorities for various types of uses of the UCLA Marks.

Are “Bruin” and “Bruins” trademarks of the University too?

Yes. When these words are used for the purpose of referring to UCLA this constitutes trademark use that requires approval from the University.

See “What are the University’s trademarks?

What Additional Campus Resources and Policies are available?

  • Student Organizations, Leadership & Engagement (SOLE):

Registered Campus Organizations are encouraged to consult with their SOLE advisor for additional information concerning student group naming conventions and rules for using the UCLA name and trademarks.

  • Student Government Accounting:

If your group will be using student government funds to purchase licensed merchandise you will need to complete the Student Government Accounting (SGA) requisition process to access these funds. Graduate Student Association (GSA) resources are available here .Under Graduate Student Association (USAC) resources are available here.

  • UCLA Policy No. 110

UCLA Policy 110 governs all uses of the UCLA name and trademarks and identifies the designated authorities with regard to different types of uses.

  • UCLA Brand Guidelines

Visual identity standards and guidelines are available online at brand.ucla.edu. This site includes guidelines on use of color, typography, mascot, etc.

  • Third-party names together with the UCLA name/logo:

In accordance with UCLA Policy 110, permission from the Administrative Vice Chancellor (AVC) is required for any and all use of the UCLA name and related names and logo together with any third-party, non-UCLA entity name or logo. Before Trademarks & Licensing will consider product design requests containing third party names/logo your organization will first need to complete the AVC review and approval process available online. Once the AVC approval step is completed you may continue with the rest of the steps outline in the Trademarks & Licensing procedures.

Why do we need to fill out a request form?

  • There are two good reasons:
    1. You’ll need permission from UCLA Trademarks & Licensing if you wish to use the UCLA name and trademarks on any consumer products whether to be sold, given away, or used for internal purposes. The Internal Campus Request Form should be used to request review and approval of your merchandise prior to production.
    2. The form also serves as a request for a reduced royalty rate if applicable.

     

    For more information on how royalties are used, see How Does ASUCLA Use Royalties?

    Please use the Internal Campus Request Form to submit your request.

Do student groups / campus organizations have to pay a royalty for use of the university’s name on products?

Yes.

As part of their license agreement contracts, all UCLA licensees pay a percentage of the wholesale price on all products they sell bearing the UCLA name and trademark. This percentage is paid to ASUCLA in the form of royalties. This is true whether the products are intended for internal use by campus departments and groups or for their promotional purposes such as giveaways to donors, fans, and visitors.

What that means is that the cost of the royalty will be included in the price you pay to the UCLA licensed vendor for the merchandise. However, there are reduced royalty rates available. For complete information see What royalty rate will apply to my order?

For more information on how royalties are used, see How Does ASUCLA Use Royalties?

What royalty rate will apply to my order?

A reduced royalty rate of 6% is currently available for most student group and department orders meeting applicable criteria. Read more to see what rate may apply to your order.

  • Current royalty rates include:
  • 15%: This is the standard rate applied on sales to most retail resellers. This rate will also apply to student group and department orders IF) their merchandise designs are not date or event specific or they otherwise resemble typical UCLA retail merchandise, or 2.) the product is intended for resale.
  • 17%: This rate applies when third-party names, such as sponsors of UCLA campus departments/groups, will appear on products bearing any UCLA Marks. (See FAQ pertaining to approvals required for the appearance of third party names including sponsors.)
  • 6%: This reduce rate is available to UCLA departments and Registered Campus Organizations, and Registered Affiliated Organizations for most of their product needs. However, it is not available if the products are to be re-sold, there are third-party sponsor names/logos that appear, or if the product design bears only the UCLA name and are not date or event specific to a program offered by the department or group (i.e. if they appear similar to typical UCLA® retail merchandise, these items will not qualify for the reduced royalty rate.)
  • To apply for a reduced royalty rate available on many internal campus departments and student group merchandise order requests it is necessary to complete and submit the Internal Campus Request Form to UCLA Trademarks & Licensing. Many, but not all, requests will qualify for the reduced rate.
  • Criteria that will disqualify organization and campus department orders from receiving the reduced 6% royalty rate include:
    • Not completing an Internal Campus Request Form
    • Intention to resell the proposed merchandise
    • Designs that are not event or date specific such that they appear the same or similar to typical “UCLA” retail merchandise
  • Questions? Please contact us for additional information. We are here to help!

Can the requirement to pay a royalty be waived?

Items that constitute work-place necessities in the ordinary course of business are typically exempt from royalty. Examples include stationery and other printed matter for departmental use as well as required uniforms such as those worn by UCLA athletes, UCLA grounds and facilities maintenance employees, UCLA Health doctors and staff, and UCPD officers and staff.

ASUCLA may use its discretion to exempt other uses from the payment of royalty.

How does ASUCLA use royalties?

uc-1-800x729Since establishing the UCLA Trademark & Licensing program in 1973, ASUCLA has reinvested royalties earned from UCLA licensed products to provide and enhance student services, to promote the advancement of licensees’ ethical sourcing practices, and to manage the legal protection and defense of the UCLA name and trademark around the world.

Revenue from royalty helps ASUCLA maintain for UCLA students the lowest student union fee in the UC system, and one of the lowest in the nation! These revenues fund capital investment in student-oriented buildings and services including lounges, meeting rooms, and event spaces and support official student government functions.

Do we have to buy from a licensed vendor?

Yes.

By purchasing from licensed vendors who meet international labor standards (as contained in the University of California’s Trademark Licensing Code of Conduct, UC Code) you help us protect UCLA’s reputation by ensuring the “UCLA” name and trademarks appear only on quality products that are produced under fair, safe, and humane working conditions.

List of approved licensed vendors »

Where can we find a list of approved licensed vendors?

Why can’t we use another vendor that isn’t on the list of licensed vendors?

Here are several reasons:

  1. The University of California’s Trademark Licensing Code of Conduct (UC Code) requires that all goods bearing the UCLA name and all related trademarks regardless of end-use– including retail and promotional items, gifts, uniforms, or other uses – must be produced or otherwise sourced only through companies authorized, by virtue of a licensing or other agreement, to place UC trademarks onto products (e.g. apparel, school supplies, toys, and promotional goods). The UC Code emphasizes that it is the responsibility of all UC employees and students ordering goods bearing UC’s name, logos or other UC-owned trademarks (including names of University departments) to use only authorized licensees that have expressly agreed to adhere to the UC Code
  2. We strive to ensure that ethical labor practices are achieved throughout supply chains used to product UCLA® licensed products by only granting licenses to vendors whose actions and business practices align with and support these values. The vetting process to obtain a license is extensive and requires commitment and investment from those companies who are granted a license. Use of un-licensed vendors circumvents the University’s efforts to achieve progress and is an unfair practice toward companies who have undertaken the work and expense to obtain and maintain a UCLA license.
  3. Buying from licensed vendors promotes ethical labor standards, transparent supply chains, and fair and humane working conditions.
  4. Purchasing products from unauthorized vendors creates risks for the university in addition to undermining its ethical sourcing objectives
  5. Royalties from officially licensed products go to enhance student union facilities and services, student and campus activities, and fund “UCLA” trademark protection. When people use an unlicensed vendor not only is this a violation of University policy, it also means no protections, royalties and other benefits to UCLA.

How does UCLA Trademarks & Licensing determine which companies to license?

We value, appreciate, and respect each company that applies for a UCLA license. Not every company that applies for a UCLA license is granted one, but we endeavor to provide constructive feedback to all applicants.

UCLA grants licenses only to companies who commit to producing products under fair, safe, and humane working conditions in accordance with the University of California’s Trademark Licensing Code of Conduct (UC Code). In addition, licensees must agree to verify, at any time and at least on an annual basis, that the terms of their agreements are implemented, that they are working continuously to improve the level of transparency in their supply chains, and that they seek to implement corrective measures relative to any non-compliances in their supply chains.

Third party sponsor designation

If your organization’s request to include the use of a third party sponsor name in association with the UCLA name is authorized by the Administrative Vice Chancellor, note that the appearance of the sponsor names/logo on any products bearing the UCLA name must be accompanied by qualifying language designating the sponsor as such. For example: “Acme Anvil Company, Proud Sponsor of UCLA Health Systems”.

Can we use a third-party sponsor name or logo along with the UCLA name or trademark on our merchandise?

Permission from the Administrative Vice Chancellor (AVC) is required for any use of the UCLA name and related names and logo together with any third-party, non-UCLA entity name or logo. This includes all marketing materials, websites and other collateral. It also means your co-branded promotional product items. Before Trademarks & Licensing will approve design requests containing any third party names/logo you will first need to complete the AVC review and approval process. Once the AVC approval step is completed you may continue with the rest of the steps outline in the Trademarks & Licensing procedures.

Registered Campus Organizations wishing to use a third-party sponsor name or logo are encouraged to contact their student group advisor at SOLE to facilitate the permission request to the Administrative Vice Chancellor’s office.

Registered Affiliated Groups and Recognized Support Groups wishing to use a third-party sponsor name or logo are encouraged to contact primary UCLA campus contact to facilitate their permission request to the Administrative Vice Chancellor’s office.

The AVC’s request form is available here.

Can we sell our merchandise?

Under rare circumstances your group may be permitted to sell your merchandise on campus subject to university policy. However, selling merchandise will impact its royalty status. Contact Trademarks & Licensing for further information.

The vendor we want to buy from is not licensed; can they be granted a license so we can do business with them?

Becoming a licensed vendor is neither quick nor easy.

The vetting process to license a new vendor is extremely rigorous, time intensive, and expensive. The process can take three to six months—and there is no guarantee the application will be approved.

Unless the product you’re looking for is unique and not available from existing UCLA licensee options, please use a company from our list of approved licensed vendors.

Read more on why it is difficult to obtain a UCLA license »

We look for licensees who are committed to meeting international labor standards (as contained in University of California’s Trademark Licensing Code of Conduct, UC Code) in the supply chains used to manufacture goods and services that will bear the UCLA Marks.

One reason we emphasize the commitment to ethical labor standards is that the manufacture of promotional goods often times involves long and largely distributed supply chains that also opaque, meaning the name and location of all manufacturing locations may not be known. This means that it is often difficult to identify whether humane working standards are in place throughout the supply chain. Licensed vendors are tasked with driving ever increasing visibility into their supply chains.

While the particular vendor you want to buy from may adhere to the highest of ethical labor standards in their shop, what about the shop that sewed the shirt, milled the fabric, farmed the cotton, hauled the materials from one shop to the next? Does your vendor know who they are? Is each link in the chain transparent about their labor standards?

The need for transparency is a key element of compliance with the UC Code. It is an element we are actively engaged in addressing in cooperation with our current promotional product licensees.

The bar is set very high for obtaining a UCLA promotional product license. We seek licensees that can substantially advance our key initiative of ethical labor practices starting with the transparency issue. If a company has a fully transparent supply chain (down to the factory level) this is a key point of distinction and would be of great interest to us.

If a vendor does want to apply, they should start by reviewing the “Apply for a License” page of our website. This explains UCLA’s commitment to ethical labor practices throughout our licensees’ supply chains. It also describes what prospective licensees should gather in preparation for the application process. Then, the vendor will need to contact our licensing agent, IMG Collegiate Licensing, through which their application will be submitted.

How much lead-time should I allow to get my merchandise?

Try to avoid last minute planning and rush orders. They may cost you extra money and can negatively impact supply chain management.

Ask your selected licensed vendors to quote the lead-time and all deadlines for placing your orders. The answer to how much lead-time to allow varies from product to product. Fully custom products requiring a unique mold, for example, could require as much as 9-12 months lead-time, while items that utilize ready-made blanks, such as a screen printed t-shirt, could be accomplished in a shorter time period.

Read more on how your efforts can positively impact ethical labor practices in supply chains used to produce UCLA licensed products.

When developing ideas for marketing campaigns and events, remember that products take time to design, be produced, and make their way to you. This means your actions have an impact on the supply chain including whether or not the ethical labor standards of the UC Code will be met.

Rush orders and change orders have documented, negative ramifications upstream in the supply chain including things like forced overtime for workers. Retailers, as well as campus departments and groups, are “in a supply chain” when they purchase products. To ensure that your actions do not negatively impact that supply chain, please plan ahead and respect the deadlines that UCLA licensees quote to your department/group.