Rugby League

NRL: Canberra Raiders keen to keep Huawei on board when sponsorship expires

The Canberra Raiders are confident they will maintain ties with major sponsor Huawei in some capacity once the deal expires at the end of next year.

Austbrokers Canberra will be the Raiders' jersey sponsor for the Auckland Nines pre-season tournament in February next year.

The Canberra-based insurance broking firm will also be a shorts sponsor for the NRL season, and will be the naming rights sponsor for the next two years of the Canberra Raiders Cup.

Raiders chief executive Don Furner said the club's deal with Huawei did not include the Auckland Nines, as it was signed off before the nines concept started.

Huawei's deal with the Raiders finishes at the end of 2016.

"They have given us an indication they want to stay on in a capacity, whether it's as the home or away sponsor or the major sponsor," Furner said. "To keep them on board will be our long-term plan. 

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"It's a long way until we have to sit down and talk to them about that."

Austbrokers Canberra has been operating in Canberra since 1983, initially as AEI Brokers, then changing its name in 2007. 

It has grown from a small office in Canberra with only 12 staff to operating from four offices across ACT, NSW and WA, with more than 30 staff.

The company's annual turnover has grown to more than $45 million, and it serves more than 10,000 clients across Australia, the US and south-east Asia.

"We've been talking to them for some time," Furner said. "They've been on board with us for some time and they're a great partner, and hopefully it will lead to bigger things down the track.

"We're always very grateful for the local companies that have done very well, and hopefully we can help promote them and they can help promote us."

Austbrokers Canberra released a statement on its website announcing the Raiders deal.

"The sponsorship provides a voice for our corporate identity, affiliating our brand with an iconic Canberra entity, which has a proud place in the history of Australian rugby league," it said.

"The partnership enhances our ability to foster links with the wider community, by way of sponsorship of the Canberra District Rugby League competition, which will be known as the Austbrokers Canberra Raiders Cup in 2016 and 2017.  

"This partnership marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Austbrokers Canberra. We look forward to growing our public profile and supporting our community."

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