Eastern Illinois University has once again offered an exclusive beverage contract to one of the country's two soft drink giants.
The university has notified Pepsi MidAmerica of its intent to enter into a five-year partnership, with an option for an additional five-year period. The formal contract signing is expected within the next two weeks.
Pepsi-Cola is no stranger to Eastern. The company's beverage products have been served throughout the university campus for more than a decade; Pepsi MidAmerica has been Eastern's sole beverage supplier for the past 10 years.
"Pepsi has been Eastern's exclusive beverage provider since the company was awarded the previous pouring rights contract by Eastern's Board of Trustees," said Jeff Cooley, vice president for business affairs. "We are pleased to recommend a continuation of this long-standing partnership with Pepsi under this new agreement."
The partnership will apply to fountain drinks in dining services, the MLK Jr. Union Food Court, and at athletic events, as well as to vending machines located around campus.
Vending machines will continue to be furnished with debit card capabilities in order to accommodate the EIU Panther Card.
The available product line will include Pepsi-Cola, Diet Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Dr. Pepper, 7-Up, Crush (orange, strawberry and grape), Squirt, Mug Root Bear, Lipton Tea, Dole and Ocean Spray juices, Hawaiian Punch, Isotonics and energy drinks, and Aquafina and Crisp-N-Clear bottled water.
Under the agreement, Pepsi-Cola products will be served exclusively during university-related functions, as well as in all food service outlets operating at the university.
In addition to debit card capabilities, Eastern's benefits from the exclusive beverage partnership include monetary contributions for academic and athletic program support.
"Exclusive beverage contracts offer attractive economic incentives in the form of additional revenue and lower product costs," said Monty Bennett, EIU director of procurement, disbursement and contractual services.
"While the exclusive relationship will limit consumer choice on campus in return for these benefits, the community surrounding Eastern's campus provides substantial access to competitive beverages for those who do not favor products included under this exclusive beverage agreement."
As part of the agreement, Eastern shall receive guaranteed pricing for five years. It is estimated that the cost of the product that the university acquires shall not exceed $400,000 per year. The actual cost will depend on actual quantities of product purchased.
During the initial five-year term, Eastern will receive $1.15 million in guaranteed commissions, $250,000 for academic program support, $315,000 for athletic program support, $50,000 for student program support, and $30,000 in donated products.
"This is the second exclusive beverage contract (both with Pepsi) of its kind on Eastern's campus, Bennett said. "We believe it's a good one, an advantageous one, bringing value for both parties involved."