Special to NYSportsJournalism.com
March 7, 2017: Relating that "Reese’s brand is all about fun and NCAA March Madness is arguably the most fun, exciting and highly-anticipated event in college sports," the Hershey Co. enters the coming basketball tournament with a new five-year deal to continue its role as "official confectionery partner."
Financial terms of the extended alliance were not shared.
The deal enables the brand to launch multi-media marketing using official NCAA logos and markings as well as maintain Reese’s position as title sponsor of the Reese’s College All-Star Game and to host a kick-off to Final Four weekend with Reese’s Final Four Friday.
The Hershey Co. has been an official partner of the NCAA since 2009. Hersey is also an official partner with the U.S. Olympic Committee.
"Reese’s brand is all about fun and NCAA March Madness is arguably the most fun, exciting and highly-anticipated event in college sports," Kristen Riggs, senior marketing director, Reese’s brand, said in a statement. "We want to inspire fans and consumers to go for it and get into the game day spirit even more passionately than before.
"Whether on the basketball court, cheering in the stands or enjoying the action from home, Reese’s brand wants to be a part of your celebrations. We couldn’t be more thrilled to continue our partnership with the NCAA," said Riggs.
The 9th annual Reese’s College All-Star Game is scheduled for March 31st in the University of Phoenix Stadium, site of the men’s Final Four (April 1) and title game (April 3).
The game features 20 of the top NCAA Div. I senior college basketball student-athletes nationwide and will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network. College basketball head coaches Josh Pastner (Georgia Tech) and Tad Boyle (Colorado) will lead the East and West teams.
The Reese’s College All-Star Game is part of the fifth annual Reese’s Final Four Friday. Open to the public, it features each of the Final Four teams in their last open practice before Saturday’s national semifinal games. A variety of special entertainment, tributes and fan activities will take place throughout the day.
According to Katy Mollica, vp-property partnerships for Turner Sports, "The Hershey Co. and Reese’s brand are iconic brands that have contributed to the success and enthusiasm around college sports, notably Final Four weekend.
"With brand strategy that extends well beyond on the ground events, to include retail and nationwide marketing activations, we are excited to continue to sweeten the experience for fans nationwide."
Entering March Madness, NCAA marketing partners include corporate champions AT&T, Capital One and Coca-Cola; and corporate partners Allstate, Amazon Echo, Bing (Microsoft), Buffalo Wild Wings, Buick, Enterprise, Infiniti, LG, Lowe’s, Marriott International, Nabisco, Northwestern Mutual, Pizza Hut, Reese’s, Unilever and Wendy’s.
March Madness Means Money, More Beer, Pizza