Business and politics stoke record sales of Ivanka’s brand

By Erika Kinetz and Anne D’Innocenzio, The Associated Press

SHANGHAI — Since her father was elected president of the United States, global sales of Ivanka Trump merchandise have surged and her company has applied for at least nine new trademarks in the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Canada and the U.S. The commercial engine of the first daughter’s brand is stronger than ever even as she builds a new political career from her West Wing office.

Sales hit record levels in 2017, despite boycotts and several stores limiting her merchandise. U.S. imports, almost all from China, shot up an estimated 166 percent last year.

The brand, which Ivanka Trump no longer manages but still owns, says distribution is growing. It has launched new activewear and affordable jewelry lines, and is working to expand its global intellectual property footprint. In addition to applying for the new trademarks, Ivanka Trump Marks LLC has won provisional approval from the Chinese government for four more since the inauguration.

In a statement Tuesday, a spokesperson for the Ivanka Trump brand said the 2017 Chinese trademarks were filed defensively to prevent counterfeiters or squatters from using her name.

Criminal conflict-of-interest law prohibits federal officials, like Trump and her husband, from participating in government matters that could impact their own financial interest or that of their spouses. Some argue that the more her business broadens its scope, the more it threatens to encroach on the ability of two of President Donald Trump’s most trusted advisers to deliver credible advice on core issues like trade, intellectual property and the value of Chinese currency.

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