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Volume 26 No. 207
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How Sweet It Is: Hershey Bar Launches At Barclays Center

The first-ever experiential “Hershey Bar” formally opens today at Barclays Center as part of the confectioner's role as the official candy company of the arena. Located on the venue’s main concourse outside section 17, the Hershey Bar serves a variety of confection-based cocktails and non-alcoholic beverages at Nets home games, concerts and events at Barclays Center. Beverages include a milkshake made with Hershey’s and Reese’s, Hershey’s hot chocolate, Jolly Rancher mixed drinks and a Hershey’s Kisses chocolate martini.

ONE AND ONLY: For BSE Global Senior VP/Partnerships & Strategy Bryan Calka, the Hershey Bar’s greatest value has to do with its exclusivity: “Our new ownership group -- Joe Tsai and his ownership team -- they have a large commitment to the fan experience … to be able to go and offer premier food and beverage opportunities inside the arena that you can’t get other places. It’s exactly why we’re doing this.” Hershey’s Dir of Disruptive Growth Allen Dark echoed Calka’s take on exclusivity, noting Barclays Center now is the “only place in the country” with the Hershey Bar concept. Calka, on the exclusivity of the Hershey Bar in the crowded N.Y. sports scene: “You’re not able to go to another venue in this market and get a boujee milkshake that has Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups that are on it. You can’t go to another venue here where they’re making a Jolly Rancher-tini. It’s something so unique and so different that fans are clamoring for.”

SWEET SYMBIOSIS: A lot of the demographics Hershey's wants to hit outside of traditional media are those that are coming to an event, such as a concert or a family show or a Nets game. Calka: “It was a great opportunity for them to test new concepts.” Dark said Hershey's “bet on Brooklyn because we wanted to put our concepts to the test in a really hot market.” Dark: “We love the energy, the diversity, and overall, we believe that will serve us well in identifying some ideas that we hope to ultimately expand to other parts of the country.” Dark said of what has Hershey’s eye in sports and events moving forward: “It’s early to speculate, but we’re excited about some of the early results and we like that we can test new concepts sort of ongoing in Brooklyn.”

TRICK-OR-TREAT! In addition to opening the Hershey Bar, Hershey’s will activate in other ways as part of its role as Barclays Center’s exclusive category provider, including as the presenting sponsor of the Nets’ Halloween-themed game during the ’20-21 NBA season. Calka called the presenting sponsorship a “no-brainer” for both parties, adding, “We thought it just made a ton of sense to have them sponsor our Halloween game and have a Brooklyn Nets and a Hershey’s trick-or-treat bag, to be able to keep both the Nets and Hershey’s top of mind for one of the largest consumable holidays of candy during the calendar year.” Both Calka and Dark also mentioned potential Hershey’s pop-up activations through Barclays Center’s “Featured on Flatbush” promotion.

HERSHEY BAR AT BARCLAYS CENTER