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HERSHEY, Pa. -- Hershey Co. announced it has extended its existing NCAA Corporate Partner agreement with CBS Sports and Turner Sports. Additionally, it has signed a new sponsorship deal with IMG College. Both agreements will run through 2016 and provide Hershey with a larger presence within collegiate sports, the company stated.
"This is an especially exciting time for Hershey as we not only extend our role as part of a prestigious group of NCAA partners, but also expand our presence within the collegiate realm through our partnership with IMG College," said Dan Vucovich, senior vice president, president, United States, The Hershey Co. "The devotion, loyalty and tremendous following fans have for their respective NCAA teams mirrors the passion and desire people have for our iconic Reese's candy, making the NCAA, Turner Sports, CBS Sports and IMG ideal partners to collaborate with and successfully market our full line of products."
As part of its corporate partnership renewal, Hershey has access to marketing rights across all 89 NCAA championships, including continued title sponsorship for its Reese's College All-Star Game during the NCAA Men's Final Four Weekend, which will be broadcast on CBS and title sponsorship of Reese's Final Four Friday, according to the announcement.
As the Official Candy Partner of the NCAA, Hershey will also continue to designate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups as the NCAA's Official Candy. The company will support the partnership with integrated marketing programs, promotional campaigns, activation platforms, social and digital media and advertising across a variety of mediums at the national, regional and local levels.
"Over the years, Hershey has demonstrated leading business principles and values, which echo the NCAA's dedication to the highest standards in academics and athletics," said Mark Lewis, executive vice president for championships and alliances, NCAA. "We are thrilled Hershey will remain in the NCAA Corporate Partner family, and we look forward to four more successful years of working together."
Hershey's new partner agreement with IMG College provides the Reese's brand collective and individual rights at 49 universities across the country for all intercollegiate athletics, and designates it the "Official Candy" at each of the respective athletic programs. The sponsorship also grants the Reese's brand key media opportunities such as radio advertising in school football radio broadcasts, promotional use of trademarks and logos and digital and social media rights.
"We are very excited to partner with Hershey over the next four years as it works to expand its presence in collegiate sports," said Roger VanDerSnick, chief sales and marketing officer, IMG College. "Tapping into IMG's national collegiate platform, Hershey gains the flexibility to utilize each school's intellectual property to create customized retail promotions in each market, which will help differentiate the brand and drive overall awareness."
CBS Sports and Turner Sports manage the NCAA's corporate marketing program as part of the 14-year multimedia agreement with the NCAA, according to the announcement.
"The Hershey Co. has proven through the years to be a perfect partner for the NCAA," said Devron Edwards, vice president, NCAA Partnerships, CBS Sports. "Their ongoing support of higher education and the student-athlete on and off the court reflects their values as a company. We are proud to partner with them and we look forward to many more successful years as we continue to expand our relationship."
"We are very pleased that Hershey is continuing its valuable commitment to collegiate athletics through their NCAA Corporate Partnership," added Will Funk, senior vice president of NCAA Partnerships and Branded Programming within Turner Sports Ad Sales. "Through this renewal, Hershey continues to have exclusive access to execute brand awareness across 89 NCAA Championships, and further extend its commitment with Reese's during Men's Final Four weekend."