PITTSBURGH, April 18, 2012 // PRNewswire // -- GNC Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: GNC), the nation's largest specialty retailer of health and wellness products, is proud to announce a partnership with Academy Award-nominated actor/producer Mark Wahlberg to develop, market and sell MARKED, a new nutritional supplement line designed to meet the demanding lifestyles of active, results-driven fitness consumers who want to get the most out of their workout and improve overall health.
"I'm excited to join forces with GNC, a brand I trust for quality and integrity, to develop the MARKED products," said Mark Wahlberg. "I attribute much of my own success to my dedication to living healthy and fit, so it is important for me to create products that will help motivate others to pursue their own personal wellness goals."
The MARKED line – consisting of seven sports and active nutrition products – was designed by leading GNC scientists and wellness experts in partnership with Wahlberg. The products are free of banned substances and are based on cutting edge nutritional science and the highest quality ingredients to deliver optimal performance and results.
"I have known Mark for several years and during that time period I have been impressed by Mark's continued personal efforts in regards to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. GNC and Mark share a strong mutual passion for helping people improve their quality of life through proper exercise, diet and supplementation. I have seen Mark repetitively reinforce this message in his everyday life and could not be more pleased that together we are undertaking this initiative, as it is a perfect alignment with our customer base," said Joe Fortunato, President and CEO. "This also represents a unique strategy for us as we introduce this comprehensive line of leading nutritional products that will be available through various channels of distribution in the U.S. and overseas."
MARKED will launch in GNC stores and on GNC.com, and is expected to be widely available through other leading retailers. A portion of all sales are being donated to the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for inner city youth.
"Our new partnership with Mark Wahlberg is a natural fit given our shared commitment to 'living well'," said Tom Dowd, EVP, Chief Merchandising Officer and General Manager. "We are pleased that MARKED will also help contribute to a great resource for inner city youth and look forward to growing this brand with the combined marketing resources of GNC and Mark Wahlberg behind it."
As part of this partnership, Wahlberg will serve as the leading brand ambassador and will drive the marketing approach for the MARKED product line. Wahlberg will also appear at GNC stores at various locations across the U.S. throughout 2012. More information about MARKED and further details on the MARKED launch, product line and availability will be available in the coming months.
Mark Wahlberg and his family established the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation on the belief that no child should be prevented from living up to his or her potential due to financial hardship. The Foundation works to improve the quality of life for teens living in urban communities and distributes funds to support local youth service and enrichment programs nationwide. A life-long member and advocate of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Mark comes from a family of nine children with limited means and spent most of his afternoons and evenings at his local club. He credits a large part of his success to the fact that he was fortunate to spend his free time in a positive and nurturing environment. Visit www.markwahlbergyouthfoundation.com.
GNC Holdings, Inc., headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pa., is a leading global specialty retailer of health and wellness products, including vitamins, minerals, and herbal supplement products, sports nutrition products and diet products, and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "GNC."
As of December 31, 2011, GNC has more than 7,600 locations, of which more than 5,900 retail locations are in the United States (including 924 franchise and 2,125 Rite Aid franchise store-within-a-store locations) and franchise operations in 53 countries (including distribution centers where retail sales are made). The Company -- which is dedicated to helping consumers Live Well -- has a diversified, multi-channel business model and derives revenue from product sales through company-owned retail stores, domestic and international franchise activities, third party contract manufacturing, e-commerce and corporate partnerships. Our broad and deep product mix, which is focused on high-margin, premium, value-added nutritional products, is sold under GNC proprietary brands, including Mega Men®, Ultra Mega®, GNC Total Lean, Pro Performance® and Pro Performance® AMP, and under nationally recognized third party brands.
For more than 75 years, GNC has been committed to bringing people superior GNC brand products using only the highest quality ingredients, manufactured under the strictest quality controls. Managing every stage of the process – from formulation to retailing – allows GNC to guarantee quality, purity and potency of GNC products.
Web: GNC.com l Twitter: @GNCLiveWell l Facebook: facebook.com/GNCLiveWell
SOURCE GNC Holdings, Inc.