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Italian Rugby Federation signs new main sponsor

The Italian Rugby Federation (FIR) has signed up insurance company Cattolica Assicurazioni as its new main sponsor.

The seven-year deal will provide Cattolica, a Verona-based company, with brand exposure on the front of the national team’s shirts.

Cattolica will also take on naming rights to Italy’s autumn Test matches, starting with this year’s fixtures against Georgia, Australia and New Zealand.

FIR president Alfredo Gavazzi said: “International rugby, with the Cattolica Test matches next November, the Six Nations and the Rugby World Cup next year in Japan, is the ideal terrain for a company determined to increase its brand awareness – and the first entirely Italian company to become a sponsor of the national team.”

Cariparma, the Italian subsidiary of French banking group Credit Agricole, had been the main sponsor of Italy’s rugby union team and its national governing body since January 2007.