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BMO Becomes the Official Bank of the Canadian Hockey League

- BMO and CHL Announce Four-Year Expanded Sponsorship Agreement, Builds on 10 Year Partnership

- Partnership Includes Special Events Around Marquee CHL Events

- Will Deepen Community Relationships in 46 Cities and Towns Across Canada

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 17, 2011) -

Editors Note: There are two photos associated with this press release.

BMO Financial Group and the Canadian Hockey League today announced BMO as the Official Bank of the Canadian Hockey League. The new four-year agreement also designates BMO as the Official Bank of each of the CHL's member hockey leagues: the Ontario Hockey League, the Western Hockey League, and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

"Supporting the CHL is an important part of our commitment to investing in communities across Canada," said Frank Techar, President and CEO, Personal and Commercial Banking Canada, BMO Bank of Montreal. "Our customers are passionate about hockey and so are we. The Canadian Hockey League is the world's best junior hockey program and we are proud to be associated with the CHL's strong commitment not only to player development, but to producing complete and mature individuals through post-secondary scholarships and bursaries.

With our partnership, fans at 46 arenas across Canada will see the BMO logo in the ice -- reaching an even larger fan base through the CHL's huge television audience. Fans can support their favourite MasterCard Memorial Cup-chasing team through their BMO CHL Affinity MasterCard."

The new agreement builds on a partnership between BMO and the CHL that has existed for more than 10 years and includes the creation of special events around the league's national marquee events – the MasterCard Memorial Cup, the Subway Super Series and the Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game. Under the sponsorship agreement, BMO will also incorporate the BMO Power of Blue program – which provides special perks to BMO customers – in 46 arenas across Canada that are home to CHL's member teams.

"Growing relationships and being active in communities across the country is something that is very important to the Canadian Hockey League and our member teams," said CHL President David Branch. "We are thrilled to have had BMO's support for the past 10 years and look forward to expanding our partnership so that we can continue to achieve these mutual goals for the benefit of our fans, players, and the game."

The enhanced relationship confirms the two organizations' shared passion for sport at the developmental level, and underscores BMO's longstanding commitment to supporting athletics and sport in Canada. BMO is also title sponsor of the BMO CHL Rookie of the Year Award, presented each year at the MasterCard Memorial Cup to an outstanding rookie from that season who demonstrates achievement, sportsmanship and dedication to sport.

The official announcement was webcast live and can be viewed at and across the CHL Network.

About the Canadian Hockey League

The Canadian Hockey League is the world's largest development hockey league with 51 Canadian and eight American teams participating in the Ontario Hockey League, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and Western Hockey League. CHL players graduate from high school at a rate higher than the Canadian national average. Last season, more than nine million fans attended CHL games in the regular season, playoffs and at the MasterCard Memorial Cup. The CHL supplies more players to the National Hockey League than any other league. Last season 636 graduates attended North American post-secondary institutions on scholarships from CHL teams.

About BMO Financial Group

For more than 193 years, BMO Financial Group has believed in community reinvestment and corporate and social responsibility in the communities it serves. In 2010, BMO contributed more than $54 million in donations, sponsorships and events in Canada and the United States to groups, organizations and programs that help build and sustain resilient, vital and healthy communities.

To view the photos associated with this press release, please visit the following links:

For further information:
Beja Rodeck

Paul Krotz, Canadian Hockey League
416-332-9711 ext. 320