London: Marilyn Monroe is about to get the biggest “marketing comeback” in history on the 50th anniversary of her death.
An American company that has paid more than 16million pounds to acquire rights to her name and likeness intends to open beauty spas, cafes and prestige stores under the Monroe banner.
“People are no longer going to see her image on glasses, pens and cheap T-shirts. We are giving her a marketing makeover and I believe she can still be one of the greatest brands in the world,” a leading daily has quoted Jamie Salter, chief executive of Authentic Brands, as saying.
Four years ago Monroe, who died from a drug overdose 50 years ago on August 5 at the age of 36, was ranked ninth on Forbes magazine’s annual list of top-earning dead celebrities, with her estate earning 4million pounds a year.
Within months of the Authentic Brands takeover last year, she rocketed to the number three spot, just behind legendary singer Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson, with earnings of 17.2million pounds.
“I believe she is still as famous as any celebrity alive and I am certain she would have been bitterly disappointed with the way her image has been handled since her death,” Salter said.
“We are changing all that and she will be associated with designer boutiques, upscale health spas and a chain of chic cafes, and that is just the start. Her memory is worth more than slapping an old photo on seaside souvenirs,” he added.