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OAK BROOK, Ill. -- Clark Retail Enterprises Inc., operator of 1,200 convenience stores, is set to launch a sports marketing program based on its sponsorship of minor league hockey teams participating in the 2002-2003 season of the American Hockey League (AHL), United Hockey League (UHL) and East Coast Hockey League (ECHL).
The program features in-arena as well as monthly in-store convenience product promotions at more than 475 Clark White Hen convenience stores in the upper Midwest. In addition, Clark said it would continue its sponsorship of the Western Kentucky University athletics program featuring football, men's and woman's basketball, men's baseball, woman's softball, soccer and volleyball for the 2002 - 2003 season, according to John Matthews, vice president of marketing and facilities for the Oak Brook, Ill.-based chain.
Teams participating in the 2002-2003 minor league hockey sponsorship program include the Chicago Wolves, last year's AHL Calder Cup Champions, as well as other teams throughout the Midwest.
Sponsorship components for the minor league hockey and university athletics program include media promotional messages, product promotion, public address announcements, exit couponing or sampling opportunities and ticket incentives. These programs are designed to build awareness of Clark's brand
portfolio, increase customer traffic, promote incremental product of participating Clark vendors and most importantly, offer customers added value for shopping at Clark and the participating brands, Matthews said.
Clark's minor league hockey sponsorship program started five years ago with the Chicago Wolves and expanded over the years as a vehicle for building brand awareness throughout the company's core markets.