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Volume 26 No. 174
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Glazed Look To You: Dunkin' Renews Sponsorship With NWHL

Dunkin’ will remain the official coffee and QSR of the NWHL, the company announced this morning. Terms of the extended partnership were not disclosed. Dunkin’ U.S. Senior VP/Integrated Marketing Tom Manchester said, “We saw women’s hockey as a platform that’s relevant to our core and new consumers and also one that didn’t have a lot of sponsors in that space.” He cited the WNBA and women’s soccer as two areas with an already sizable sponsorship presence. Dunkin’ was the NWHL’s first official corporate partner for the league's inaugural season in '15. For the upcoming season, Dunkin’ branding will be featured on player jerseys, goal posts, behind each team’s bench and online in various formats. The company also will play a key role around marquee NWHL events throughout the regular season and playoffs. NWHL Commissioner Dani Rylan said, “Dunkin’ has been a sponsor of the NWHL since day one, and our players, fans and leadership have never and will never forget that. More than any brand in the U.S., it was Dunkin’ that first recognized the advancement of women’s hockey and the value of the athletes.” In analyzing the extended partnership, Dunkin’ saw “good alignment and integration” to support both men’s and women’s hockey based on the company’s current NHL league deal and more than a dozen team partnerships, Manchester said. The brand is weighing possible cross-promotional opportunities between the NHL and NWHL as early as this season.

FITTING DUNKIN'S FOOTPRINT: The geographic makeup of the five-team league represents some of Dunkin’s core markets in Boston, N.Y. and Connecticut, as well as emerging ones Buffalo and Minnesota. As the NWHL regular season kicks off in three weeks on Oct. 5, Dunkin’ is examining bringing local player clinics to each team market this season, according to Manchester, with two chief objectives being targeting parents and helping expand the hockey audience. Dunkin' also is the title sponsor for the upcoming "Dream Gap Tour" on Oct. 5-6. The four-game exhibition event in the northeast features top women players in North America, including 20 Olympians. Current NWHL brand partners include Chipwich, VEDA, NYU Langone Health and Twitch, which will live stream all league games for the '19-20 season.