By Martin Vedris

SYDNEY: It was a fairy tale start to the world of Rugby League team sponsorship for De’Longhi Australia when their new team, the beleaguered South Sydney Rabbitohs, pulled off an unexpected win against the New Zealand Warriors on Friday night.

It was only the second win of the season for the Rabbitohs after 13 rounds and the team won 35 points to 28 against the New Zealand Warriors, on their home ground, in what some consider the upset of the year.

Before the game De’Longhi general manager sales and marketing, Tom Mitchell, said that the sponsorship deal had already proved a winner for De’Longhi but he predicted that the Rabbitohs had more game in them than they had shown so far.

“It would be nice to think we had something to do with it” Mitchell told “But it was just good timing where the efforts of others have finally showed a good result for all interested parties.”

Mitchell said that De’Longhi Australia could not be happier with the first sponsored game in the company’s first major sports sponsorship in Australia.

“From here on in we just want the rest of the year to be enjoyable so we will take it week by week,” Mitchell said.

“By the end of next week the Rabbitohs will be on eight points and in industry lingo, equates to 100 per cent growth!”

For De’Longhi Australia CEO Paolo Albertoni, the results are great but it’s the community aspects of the South club that he admires in particular.

“We have enjoyed a little bit of good luck and success in the electrical industry over the last few years so it is nice to think we can develop our business to also be good corporate citizens,” Albertoni said.

“Souths Cares, an organisation developed around South Sydney Rabbitohs, is having a big event this Friday night so we look forward to supporting this initiative immediately.

“Souths Cares assists disadvantaged young people and their families, and focuses on indigenous communities throughout Australia.”

Meanwhile, on the business front, Albertoni said that De’Longhi was urgently bringing in more heaters and dehumidifiers from New Zealand to cater for the wet and cold weather conditions forecast to go through to July in a number of states and territories around Australia.

“Now is the time to buy heaters, coffee machines, dehumidifiers, and a rabbit’s foot for more good luck.”