Former Motor City Bowl Becomes Little Caesars Pizza Bowl
DETROIT, Sept. 2 // PRNewswire // -- Bowl officials today announced Little Caesars Pizza(R), the international pizza chain that celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, as the title sponsor of the former Motor City Bowl. The agreement includes name sponsorship of the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl, a national promotion and other game week activities.
The 13th annual post-season college football bowl game featuring the Mid-American Conference Champion against a bowl-eligible Big Ten team will take place on Dec. 26 at 1 p.m. at Ford Field in Detroit, home to the NFL's Detroit Lions and Super Bowl XL.
"I'm a life-long sports fan," said Michael Ilitch, co-founder and chairman, Little Caesar Enterprises, Inc. "This bowl is a great opportunity to provide a fun experience for families and college football fans, while supporting college athletics. And what food goes better with football than Little Caesars pizza?"
"Little Caesars is a strong addition to our program," said Ken Hoffman, chairman and executive director of the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. "With locations in Detroit and coast to coast, we feel that Little Caesars will bring a heightened awareness of our game."
Little Caesars will enhance its sponsorship of the game by providing customer promotions including the chance to win tickets to national bowl championship games; hotel, airfare and tickets to the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl; as well as great Little Caesars products, among other prizes. There will also be great ticket discounts and giveaways available through Little Caesars stores and a special HOT-N-READY(R) offer on game day.
"We are very excited about this new alliance," said David Scrivano, president of Little Caesar Enterprises, Inc. "We look forward to running promotions in Little Caesars stores across the country to enhance the bowl game experience and provide increased exposure for the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. Pizza and football are a natural combination, and our franchisees are eager to share the bowl experience with our customers."
Many events are being planned in conjunction with the game, including a Little Caesars pizza party on game day, prizes like Christmas Night dinner with celebrity hosts Lloyd Carr and George Perles, a Detroit Red Wings game for the players, and community service activities featuring the Little Caesars Love Kitchen and participating Little Caesars Pizza Bowl teams.
"Detroit has hosted many premiere showcase events including the Major League All Star Game, Super Bowl XL and the Final Four," said Christopher Ilitch, president and CEO, Ilitch Holdings, Inc. and also current chairman of the Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau. "We know from these events that the bowl will not only provide a tremendous economic boost to the city, region and state, but it provides the opportunity to create a positive impression when people experience the city firsthand, which is vitally important."
"We've had a tremendous relationship with this bowl for over a decade and are thrilled to see such a great sponsor as Little Caesars come on board," said Dave Brown, vice president, ESPN programming and acquisitions. "Little Caesars Pizza has found the perfect partners in Ken and his team, who have done a terrific job of growing the game into a must-see event for college football fans during the bowl season."
Like Little Caesars, the bowl is committed to giving back to the community. Through its Stocking Stuffer Program, thousands of youngsters from local community, youth, church, and civic groups are given an opportunity to attend the game. Tickets are donated to groups and organizations such as schools, community service organizations, churches, youth groups and others. Players from the two competing teams also partner with the Salvation Army to serve breakfast each Christmas morning to needy people in Detroit.
The Little Caesars Pizza Bowl is the Midwest's only major college football bowl game. The 2009 bowl will mark the 13th year that the bowl has brought major college bowl action to Detroit.
Little Caesars Pizza founders Michael and Marian Ilitch opened their first restaurant in Garden City, Michigan, in 1959. Little Caesars, the fastest growing pizza chain, built more stores in the world in 2008 than any other pizza brand and today is the largest carry-out chain globally with restaurants on five continents. Little Caesars is growing in prime markets across the country, and is offering strong franchisee candidates an opportunity for independence with a proven system. For the second year in a row, Little Caesars was named "Best Value in America"* of all quick-serve restaurant chains. In addition, Little Caesars offers strong brand awareness with one of the most recognized and appealing characters in the country, Little Caesar.
Early on, Mike and Marian Ilitch sponsored youth hockey, which led to the Little Caesars Amateur Hockey League, the country's most respected youth hockey program. Recently, Little Caesars announced its sponsorship of the Little Caesars Roller Hockey League.
In addition to Little Caesars Pizza, Ilitch companies in the food, sports and entertainment industries include: the Detroit Red Wings, Olympia Entertainment, Olympia Development, Blue Line Foodservice Distribution, Champion Foods, Ilitch Holdings, Inc., Uptown Entertainment, Little Caesars Pizza Kit Fundraising Program, and a variety of venues within these entities. Michael Ilitch owns the Detroit Tigers. Marian Ilitch owns MotorCity Casino Hotel.
* "Highest-Rated Chain - Value for the Money" based on a nationwide survey of quick-service restaurant consumers conducted by Sandelman & Associates, 2008
SOURCE Little Caesars Pizza