Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) has been unveiled as the connectivity partner for Stamford Bridge – Chelsea Football Club’s home stadium in Fulham, London. Free Wi-Fi coverage will be provided via the Small Cell as a Service connected venue business model whereby Ericsson designs, builds and operates the network on the customer’s behalf. As a result, Chelsea FC will be able to provide fans throughout the stadium with a richer experience that enables them to interact digitally with each other, the club, friends and family.
In winning their fifth Premier League title in 2016/2017, Chelsea FC sold out every home match day at Stamford Bridge. Many fans used their smartphones to share photos and videos via social media, often stretching cellular networks to the limit. To ensure visitors can enjoy a seamless digital experience, Ericsson will design, build and operate a carrier-grade Wi-Fi access network and then manage it on Chelsea FC’s behalf.
Chris Townsend, Chelsea FC commercial director, says: “We look forward to a rich partnership with Ericsson which will directly assist the thousands of fans who come regularly to Stamford Bridge. Ericsson leads the way in providing innovative digital solutions and we welcome them to the Chelsea family.”
Arun Bansal, Senior Vice President, Europe & Latin America, Ericsson, says: “Our research indicates that people want to use their digital devices wherever they go – and the urge to connect is even greater at a Chelsea FC home game. Through this partnership, we will ensure the connectivity at Stamford Bridge matches the quality of the football and look forward to exploring further options that will enable Chelsea FC to take the digital experience to the next level.”
Small Cell as a Service supports service providers’ cellular go-to-market models, enables businesses to monetize Wi-Fi, provides a business case for network build-out and improves end-user experience. In 2015, Legia Warsaw became the first football club in Europe to sign a Small Cell as a Service contract with Ericsson. In 2016, Ericsson became the connectivity partner for the Ricoh Arena stadium in Coventry, England, home to Aviva Premiership rugby team Wasps and Wasps Netball.
Through four weeks of football mania in Brazil in 2014, the Nordic World Ski Championships in Sweden in 2015, the 2016 European football tournament in France, and the 2016 summer sports event in Rio, Ericsson ensured the networks kept pace with the fans. Click here to read how we connect the most popular venues around the world.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Chelsea Football Club
Chelsea Football Club is one of the world’s top football clubs and current Premier league champions. UEFA Champions League winners in 2012, the club followed that success by lifting the UEFA Europa League trophy in 2013. Founded in 1905, Chelsea is London’s most central football club, based at the iconic 42,000-capacity Stamford Bridge stadium.
Nicknamed ‘the Blues’, Chelsea are five-time English Premier League champions and have also lifted the FA Cup seven times, the Football League Cup five times, the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup twice, the UEFA Super Cup once and the Football League Championship once, in 1955. The Europa League triumph saw Chelsea become the first English club to win all three major UEFA competitions, and the first club ever to hold both the Champions League and Europa League at the same time.
In addition to possessing some of the world’s most recognisable players and head coach Antonio Conte, the club has also invested in its future with a state-of-the-art Academy and training centre in Cobham, Surrey. Since its opening in 2007, Chelsea have lifted the FA Youth Cup trophy six times and the UEFA Youth League twice. The Chelsea Ladies team also won the FA Women’s Super League and FA Women’s Cup Double in 2015, adding the Spring Series in 2017.
Additionally, the Chelsea Foundation boasts one of the most extensive community initiatives in sport, working in 30 countries around the world, helping improve the lives of more than 900,000 children and young people each year.
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Ericsson is a world leader in communications technology and services with headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden. Our organization consists of more than 111,000 experts who provide customers in 180 countries with innovative solutions and services. Together we are building a more connected future where anyone and any industry is empowered to reach their full potential. Net sales in 2016 were SEK 222.6 billion (USD 24.5 billion). The Ericsson stock is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm and on NASDAQ in New York. Read more on www.ericsson.com.