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Averett Teams Up With Strategic Marketing Affiliates, Inc. to Protect and Grow University’s Brand

February 26, 2013

Averett University has partnered with Strategic Marketing Affiliates, Inc. (SMA) to help the University better protect and promote its fast-growing brand. SMA is a leader in the collegiate licensing industry, representing more than 280 colleges and universities throughout North America.

The new partnership will enable Averett to establish and manage a responsive and profitable licensing program for all of its promotional merchandise on all 12 of its campuses and beyond. It will also help Averett protect the integrity of its institutional logos, and empower the University to sell its trademarked merchandise more aggressively through local, regional and national retailers, as well as via e-commerce.

"Every Averett T-shirt, sweatshirt, mug, etc. that we sell will now help generate more revenue for Averett – without affecting the retail price of our merchandise," said Danny Miller, Averett's interim director of athletics. "When no licensing program for a university exists, wholesalers typically charge a licensing fee to retailers on merchandise like ours anyway, and then keep that fee for themselves," Miller explained. "Thanks to our new licensing program, Averett will now be able to keep the licensing fee wholesalers were previously charging retailers."

"We're excited about all of the great services SMA brings to the table," said Charles Harris, executive vice president at Averett. "Our partnership will help Averett grow our relationships with local, regional and national vendors and enhance our brand in the marketplace. I think our alumni and friends are going to be very excited about the opportunities this partnership gives us to increase the visibility of the University, to build on our growing reputation and to benefit from new revenue streams. We look forward to the near future when Averett T-shirts, sweatshirts and other promotional items are being sold at places like Walmart, alongside other leading brands. It's a win-win situation for everyone."

"SMA is honored to team up with Averett University at this very exciting time in its history," said Tony Johnson, SMA's senior vice president. "Averett is the leading University in southern Virginia. This year it moved up seven spots in the "U.S. News & World Report" rankings, and thanks to Averett's visionary leadership and the recent outpouring of support from its donors, the University's potential for growth is remarkable."