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Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and BIG EAST Renew Premier Partnership
Reese's Brand to Again Serve as `Official Candy' of 2011 BIG EAST Conference
Mar 08, 2011

ATLANTA, Ga., (March 8, 2011) - The BIG EAST Conference today announced a renewed agreement with Reese's® Peanut Butter Cups that establishes the Reese's brand as the "official candy of The BIG EAST Conference" and a Premier Partner of the 2011 BIG EAST Basketball Championships for both men and women.

As a Premier Partner for the 2011 basketball tournaments, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups will receive prominent exposure inside and outside of both host arenas (Madison Square Garden for the men's tournament; the XL Center in Hartford, CT, for the women's event). That includes an on-court logo and permanent presence on the Madison Square Garden video board "underbelly," as well as rotational signage and in-arena promotions at both MSG and the XL Center.

The brand will also have a strong presence as a radio sponsor on the BIG EAST National Network from IMG College and online advertising on the Conference's official website (www.BIGEAST.org).

"The Reese's brand is excited to be the premier partner of the BIG EAST Conference and Championship for the second consecutive year. The partnership between the BIG EAST and brand is a perfect match-up just like the perfect combination of chocolate and peanut butter of a Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. We're thrilled to be back at Madison Square Garden and look forward to the thrilling basketball games of the BIG EAST Conference," said Anna Lingeris, spokeswoman for the Reese's brand.

The partnership was secured and will be managed by IMG College, a division of IMG Worldwide and the exclusive multimedia rights holder for the Conference, along with Optimum Sports - A Division of Omnicom Media Group Entertainment and Sports, who represents The Hershey Company's Sports Marketing partnerships.

"The BIG EAST partnership is one that has evolved from a complimentary branding play to an integral piece of the Reese's brands collegiate platform. The regional passion and national exposure of the BIG EAST Men's Tournament is a perfect vehicle to reach the avid College Basketball fan." Bryan McAleer, Optimum Sports Account Director.

"There are not many brands more recognizable than Reese's, and we believe there aren't many better events in all of college athletics than the BIG EAST Men's Basketball Championship at Madison Square Garden," BIG EAST Conference Commissioner John Marinatto. "Our 16 member institutions and 5,000-plus student-athletes are thankful for their continued support of BIG EAST athletics."

The 2011 BIG EAST Men's Basketball Championship will be held March 8-12 at Madison Square Garden.

The 2011 BIG EAST Women's Basketball Championship will be held March 4-8 in Hartford, CT, at the XL Center.

About the Big East Conference
The BIG EAST is the nation's largest Division I-A conference with 16 members. Those institutions reside in nine of the nation's top 34 media markets, including New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Tampa, Pittsburgh, Hartford, Milwaukee and Cincinnati. BIG EAST markets contain almost one fourth of all television households in the U.S. Since its founding in 1979, the league has won 26 national championships in six different sports, including five men's basketball titles and seven women's basketball crowns. In 2009, BIG EAST schools comprised four of the eight teams in the men's and women's Final Four events, a feat that has happened only once before in NCAA Championship history.

About The Hershey Company
The Hershey Company (NYSE: HSY) is the largest producer of quality chocolate in North America and a global leader in chocolate and sugar confectionery. Headquartered in Hershey, Pa., The Hershey Company has operations throughout the world and more than 12,000 employees. With revenues of more than $5 billion, Hershey offers such iconic brands as Hershey's, Reese's, Hershey's Kisses, Kit Kat, Twizzlers and Ice Breakers as well as the smooth, creamy indulgence of Hershey's Bliss chocolates. Hershey is a leader in the fast-growing dark and premium chocolate segment, with such brands as Hershey's Special Dark and Hershey's Extra Dark. In addition, Artisan Confections Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Hershey Company, markets such premium chocolate offerings as Scharffen Berger and Dagoba. For more than 100 years, The Hershey Company has been a leader in making a positive difference in the communities where we live, work and do business. The Milton Hershey School, established by the company's founder in 1909, provides a nurturing environment, quality education, housing, and medical care at no cost to children in social and financial need. The School is administered by the Hershey Trust Company, Hershey's largest shareholder, making the students of Milton Hershey School direct beneficiaries of Hershey's success. Please visit us at www.hersheys.com.

About IMG College
IMG College is the leader in capturing consumer devotion to college sports through partnership opportunities in licensing, marketing, events and hospitality, multimedia rights, stadium and arena development, sales, and consulting across local, regional, and national platforms. IMG College partners with the nation's top collegiate brands, including the NCAA and its 88 championships, NCAA Football, leading conferences, and some of the most prestigious universities in the country. IMG College is a division of IMG Worldwide, the world's premier sports, media, and entertainment company. For more information, please visit www.imgworld.com.