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January 2008

In the pizzeria in Venice’s Zattere district and before the City’s Mayor, Massimo Cacciari, a friendly challenge has been launched to Pizza Express, the London-based food chain and partner of Venice in Peril Fund (the British committee that raises funds for renovation works to Venice’s heritage). The actors on stage at this fun event were the six young Venetian business people of the group called “Ae Oche” (in Venetian dialect “where the Geese hang out”). They have enthusiastically opted to take part in Fondaco’s project and become official partners of the City of Venice.

Whoever said Venetians - and young ones in particular - are insensitive to their city? To refute this stereotype with concrete facts, a new initiative by Fondaco starts up today to improve the Venice’s artistic heritage, with the “Pizzeria Ae Oche” taking up a leading part in the play. “It’s a response from local business that takes up the friendly challenge of London’s Pizza Express chain, which has been a long-time partner of the Venice in Peril Fund” – stated Enrico Bressan of Fondaco (the challenge over quality has of course already been decided!). “We asked ourselves why we couldn’t launch a similar project of our own - to show that Venetians love their city too. So we contacted the managers of this important and rapidly growing group of local caterers, and were delighted to find immediate interest and enthusiasm”. “It is the proof that Venice, if interpreted in the right way, is a city that’s both alive and lively. In this sense – says Giovanna Zabotti marketing manager at Fondaco – we have tried to give a lively, young image to the venture, asking for help from Mirko Pavan, a young cartoonist. The result is the birth of Todaroca, the super hero who stands boldly on the Todaro column, crushing the crocodile-dragon”. The journey, the perspective of which extends several years into the future, – Bressan continues – begins with the restoration of the basement of the Todaro column, an important symbol of the city and one with a dual meaning: the consolidation of the foundations of we Venetians starting from the heart of the city: St. Mark’s Square. This is the content we want to give to the operation. It’s a way of going back to Venice’s daily life by improving her artistic assets and heritage.” “We are Venetian business people who have their own city at heart – says Bruno Milliaccio speaking on behalf of all the team – which is why we have so enthusiastically taken up Fondaco’s proposal. We think that to link our business to a concrete commitment to improve Venice’s immense artistic heritage is also a way to express the right attention to the city. This is why we have involved all of our chain’s restaurants, for the goal is to encourage our customers to take part and to make them feel that, along with us, they too are leading players in this initiative. € 0.10 of every cover charge will be donated to restoration works that, every year, we will choose to carry out together with Fondaco and Venice’s city council”. “There are two new items of news – Milliaccio goes on – that we have created for the occasion: first, the “Todaroca”, a super hero with a mission to restore the basement of the famous Todaro column and the “Pizza Venezia”, an idea of our expert pizza chefs, with seafood and scampi alla busara. In particular, this latter pizza will contribue with € 1,00 to the restoration works”. “We think this is the best and “young” way to say thanks to our city. We have decided to create a personality which is funny, happy and witty - in keeping with our image - to communicate an important initiative that we hope may act as a stimulus and benchmark for other businesses, and to convey a more dynamic and modern image of the city”.


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