SCHICK BACK AGAIN WITH NBA;BUCKS' ROOKIE RAY ALLEN FEATURED IN YOUTH PUSH

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Warner-Lambert Co.'s Schick Shaving Products, a longtime National Basketball Association sponsor, has renewed for two more years and will tip off its youth-targeted marketing push in mid-January.

The effort will feature NBA rookie Ray Allen of the Milwaukee Bucks.

The inventory in the NBA's rookie marketing package includes title sponsorships of the Rookie Game at NBA All-Star Weekend (Feb. 7-9), the All-Rookie Team, and both the Rookie of the Month and Rookie of the Year awards. The rookie platform was created four years ago by the NBA and Schick as a way for both to reach older teens and young adults.

To complement its NBA program, Schick will expand its grass-roots property, Schick Super Hoops, a national collegiate intramural tournament recently endorsed by the NBA that this season will involve 600 schools.

Schick is bringing on three additional sponsors, including a TV network that will possibly air Schick-sponsored vignettes drawn from Super Hoops footage.

LEVERAGING THE SPONSORSHIP

Schick will leverage these sponsorships with an integrated marketing program to be launched four weeks prior to All-Star Weekend. A sweepstakes promotion for Schick's products will be supported with point-of-purchase displays and free standing inserts.

A TV spot, to air during NBA broadcasts on TBS and TNT, and a half-page ad in USA Today will tout the promotion and the Feb. 8 Rookie Game to be broadcast on TNT.

National Media Group, New York, is Schick's sports marketing agency, and J. Walter Thompson USA, New York, is the marketer's ad agency.

Past rookie spokesmen have included Grant Hill and Chris Webber. None, however, appeared in Schick advertising.

Additionally, Mr. Allen will write a journal of his experiences as a rookie leading up to the Rookie Game that will be posted on Schick's Web site (http://www. schick.com), linked also to the NBA's site (http://www.nba.com).

"We're striving for a stronger tie to the [Rookie Game] and [to] remind consumers that we're the sponsor of the game. We're just now finalizing how that will be presented thematically," said Gord Knapp, regional VP-North America for Schick.

Schick wouldn't disclose spending for the program.

But, said Peter Caplan, co-CEO at National Media Group, "We believe with an integrated effort that leverages key NBA properties, you can still have an impactful promotion with less money."

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