Lindt Partners with Autism Speaks for Third Year; Expands Easter Giveback Program Partnership to Raise Funds to Support Autism Cause

STRATHAM, N.H., Feb. 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Premium Swiss chocolatier, Lindt   today announces their partnership with Autism Speaks for a third year to raise funds for the autism cause during the Easter season.  As a cornerstone of the partnership, Lindt will again support the non-profit through donations from sales of the iconic Lindt Gold Bunny.  Additional funds for Autism Speaks will be raised through the second annual Lindt Gold Bunny Celebrity Auction, Lindt Easter e-cards, and a new Lindt Facebook initiative.

Now through Easter, April 24, 2011, Lindt will donate 10 cents to Autism Speaks for every Lindt Gold Bunny purchased in the United States, up to $100,000.  Lindt Gold Bunny, the #1 selling chocolate bunny in the United States, is available in five sizes and three chocolate varieties: milk, dark and white chocolate.  It is a premium addition to any Easter basket, and a perfect way for people to celebrate spring and help give back at the same time.

Porcelain Lindt Gold Bunny figurines, autographed by top celebrities, will be auctioned off this spring when Lindt hosts the second annual Lindt Gold Bunny Celebrity Auction, with all proceeds going directly to Autism Speaks.  In addition, consumers can support the cause by sending free Lindt e-cards to family and friends for Easter, or by "like"-ing Lindt on Facebook.  Available at LindtGoldBunny.com, Lindt will donate $1 to Autism Speaks for every e-card sent, up to $5,000, and for every new Lindt Facebook "like," Lindt will also donate $1 to Autism Speaks, up to an additional $5,000.

"We are very pleased to be partnering with Autism Speaks for a third year to help support a cause that affects so many," said Thomas Linemayr, chief executive officer and president of Lindt USA.  "First introduced more than 60 years ago, Lindt Gold Bunny is now a beloved icon of the Easter season and we're very happy it is also the bunny that gives back."

As an extension of the partnership, Lindt continues to honor champions for the cause through the third annual Lindt Unsung Heroes of Autism program.  The program rewards three individuals who are making a difference for those affected by autism in their family, home or community.

"One in 110 children and countless family members across the country are touched daily by the effects of autism," said Mark Roithmayr, president of Autism Speaks, North America's largest autism research and advocacy organization.  "We are delighted to continue our partnership with Lindt and appreciate their commitment to growing the program."

For more information on the Lindt and Autism Speaks partnership and related initiatives, Lindt Gold Bunny, or to send an Easter themed e-card, visit www.LindtGoldBunny.com.  To "like" Lindt on Facebook visit Facebook.com/LindtChocolate.  For more information about Autism Speaks, visit www.AutismSpeaks.org.

About Lindt & Sprungli

Founded in 1845, Lindt & Sprungli is a global leader in the premium chocolate category, offering high-quality products in more than 100 countries.  Lindt & Sprungli operates eight production facilities in Europe and the United States and employs 7,400 worldwide.  Lindt USA operates more than 40 retail stores in the U.S. and maintains wide distribution through extensive retail and wholesale channels.  For more information on Lindt, visit www.lindt.com.

About Autism Speaks

Autism Speaks is North America's largest autism science and advocacy organization. Since its inception in 2005, Autism Speaks has made enormous strides, committing over $160 million to research through 2014 and developing innovative new resources for families. The organization is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. In addition to funding research, Autism Speaks has created resources and programs including the Autism Speaks Autism Treatment Network, Autism Speaks' Autism Genetic Resource Exchange and several other scientific and clinical programs. Notable awareness initiatives include the establishment of the annual United Nations-sanctioned World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, which Autism Speaks celebrates through its Light it Up Blue initiative. Also, Autism Speaks award-winning "Learn the Signs" campaign with the Ad Council has received over $258 million in donated media. Autism Speaks' family resources include the Autism Video Glossary, a 100 Day Kit for newly-diagnosed families, a School Community Tool Kit and a community grant program. Autism Speaks has played a critical role in securing federal legislation to advance the government's response to autism, and has successfully advocated for insurance reform to cover behavioral treatments in 23 states thus far, with bills pending in an additional 14 states. Each year Walk Now for Autism Speaks events are held in more than 80 cities across North America. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit www.autismspeaks.org.

SOURCE Lindt & Sprungli



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