Viz announces Dr. Pepper as new advertising partner with Shonen Jump

Official Press Release

San Francisco, Calif, April 27, 2004 - VIZ, LLC, one of the leading publishers and distributors of manga and anime content for North American audiences, announced today the launch of a new advertising campaign with Dr Pepper. The first advertising will appear in the pages of the June 2004 issue of SHONEN JUMP magazine, which goes on sale nationwide on May 4, 2004.

To help promote the campaign, SHONEN JUMP and Dr Pepper, will also launch the "Be You, Be a Pepper, Be Manga" art contest providing readers and self-styled manga artists the opportunity to win prizes from Dr Pepper. SHONEN JUMP readers will be encouraged to draw themselves as an original manga-style character enjoying the great taste of Dr Pepper. Twenty submitted entries will be selected as finalists by the magazine's editors based on originality, creativity and the incorporation of a Dr Pepper can/bottle/logo.

The finalists will be posted on the SHONEN JUMP website at www.SHONENJUMP.com. Readers may vote for favorites via the site and will select the Grand Prize winner, who will be awarded a Trek mountain bike valued at $400.00. A First Place winner will score a Nintendo Game Cube and twenty-five Runner-ups will win official Dr Pepper hats. In addition, finalists will be given the opportunity to have their artwork featured online and may have the prospect to be featured in an upcoming issue of SHONEN JUMP.

"SHONEN JUMP is pleased to partner with Dr Pepper to offer this unique, promotional and artistic opportunity to our fans," states Yumi Hoashi, Vice President of SHONEN JUMP. "Surveys have shown that Dr Pepper is the beverage-of-choice among SHONEN JUMP readers and the edgy image of the brand, combined with the popularity of manga and anime, should make for great synergy."

"Based on the uniqueness of both SHONEN JUMP magazine and Dr Pepper, and the increasing 'coolness' of manga and anime, we feel strongly this promotional campaign will be a hit," said Peter Nelson, field marketing manager, Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc. "We look forward to this opportunity to reach our consumers via SHONEN JUMP. SHONEN JUMP is an exciting new property whose uniqueness resembles the type of taste our consumers thirst for. We look forward to a long and successful relationship with VIZ."

Since its debut in 2003, SHONEN JUMP magazine has built a devoted and growing reader base with a current monthly paid circulation rate of 177,000. The monthly anthology is the North American counterpart of the popular Japanese weekly of the same name and features the serialized adventures of DRAGON BALL Z, HIKARU NO GO, NARUTO, YU-GI-OH!, YUYU HAKUSHO, ONE PIECE, and SHAMAN KING.

About Dr Pepper

Dr Pepper is the leading brand in the Plano, Texas-based Dr Pepper/ Seven Up, Inc. portfolio. Dr Pepper/Seven Up is the largest beverage division of London-based beverage and confectionery firm Cadbury Schweppes plc (NYSE:CSG), and the largest producer of non-cola soft drinks in North America. The company's leading brands include, 7 UP, Sunkist, A&W Root Beer, Canada Dry, Sunkist, Squirt, Hawaiian Punch and Schweppes, as well as the RC Cola an Slush Puppie brands.

About VIZ, LLC

Founded in 1986, VIZ is a multi-media entertainment company specializing in Japanese entertainment properties for U.S. audiences. VIZ offers an integrated product line including magazines, graphic novels, videos, DVDs and audio soundtracks. Each month, VIZ publishes three magazines ? ANIMERICA, ANIMERICA EXTRA and SHONEN JUMP; over 20 graphic novel titles, including ALICE 19th, BOYS OVER FLOWERS, DRAGON BALL Z, FUSHIGI YÛGI, GUNDAM, INUYASHA, RANMA 12, and YU-GI-OH!; and distributes home video for BOYS OVER FLOWERS, HAMTARO, INUYASHA, POKéMON, PROJECT ARMS, and ZOIDS.

Based in San Francisco, VIZ is one of the top five comics publishers in the U.S. and a subsidiary of Shogakukan and Shueisha Inc., two of the top publishers in Japan. VIZ is the leading publisher of manga for English speaking audiences, serving a growing market of dedicated fans of all ages. Estimating a core audience of nearly 15 million fans, the company holds more than a 50% market share of Japanese comics in the U.S. With some of the most innovative products in the industry, VIZ has expanded its offerings to its loyal fans through web sites such as www.animerica-mag.com, www.shonenjump.com, and its corporate site, www.viz.com.

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