Cisco-Real deal to make Bernabéu futuristic


Real Madrid partners with Cisco Image: Cisco

The networking hardware company Cisco and the Spanish professional football club Real Madrid CF have announced a global and multiyear collaboration agreement at Real Madrid City to transform the new Santiago Bernabéu Stadium into one of the most technologically advanced sports venues in the world.

The ‘Cisco’ stated that as the club’s Official Technology Partner, Cisco will equip the new Santiago Bernabéu Stadium with a comprehensive deployment of its industry-leading technology -including connectivity, security, data center, and digital signage solutions – all designed on a single intelligent network and Cisco-converged.

Cisco is the world leader in Internet technology. Cisco inspires new possibilities by reinventing applications, protecting data, transforming infrastructure, and facilitating collaborative work to advance a global and inclusive future.

Real Madrid or simply Real, is a Spanish professional football club based in Madrid (Spain). Founded on March 6th, 1902 as Madrid Football Club, the club has traditionally worn a white home kit since inception.

Real Madrid CF is a sports entity with 119 years of history. It is the club with the most European Cups in both football (13) and basketball (10) and was awarded by FIFA as the Best Club of the 20th century. Real Madrid has millions of fans in all corners of the world, with 387 million followers on social media, and for the third consecutive year is the most valuable football club in Europe according to The European Elite 2020 report, prepared by the KPMG consultant. Real Madrid is the most valuable football brand in the world for Brand Finance for the third consecutive year and achieved the highest record in the Transparency Index of football clubs last season.

The Santiago Bernabéu Stadium is a football stadium in Madrid, Spain. With a current seating capacity of 81,044, it has been the home stadium of Real Madrid since its completion in 1947. It is the second-largest stadium in Spain and third-largest home to a top-flight European club after the 99,354-capacity Camp Nou in Barcelona, Spain, and the 81,365-capacity Westfalenstadion in Dortmund, Germany.

The ‘Cisco’ further stated that the 85,000-seat multipurpose stadium will thus have the largest wireless connectivity network based on Wi-Fi 6 technology in Europe to date. More than 1,200 Wi-Fi 6 access points at the Santiago Bernabéu will offer greater speed, reliability and bandwidth than the previous Wi-Fi standard so that fans can enjoy more immersive experiences with their devices.

It may be noted that the Spanish LaLiga football club Real Madrid have taken out an additional loan of €225million for a new phase of remodeling work at its residence – the Santiago Bernabéu – that will see an underground greenhouse installed.

The ‘Los Blancos’ initially confirmed plans for the €525m renovation four years ago, with the work set to increase capacity by 4,000 to roughly 85,000 and include the incorporation of a retractable roof and pitch.

The Santiago Bernabéu Stadium is undergoing total transformation – complete spruce-up, a state-of-the-art look has been lent by adding a futuristic façade, retractable roof and premium facilities.

Stadiums using Cisco Wi-Fi 6 technology have achieved record levels of fan traffic and data consumption, achieving levels of interaction with spectators and supporters previously only seen at the world’s biggest sporting events.

Celebrated club

As one of the most storied and celebrated clubs in the world, Real Madrid is also a recognized global leader in sports innovation. Through the above partnership, Real Madrid will not only take advantage of Cisco’s full range of technology solutions, but also its industry expertise in working with the world’s largest sports organizations, leagues, teams, and stadia.

Thanks to a single-converged Cisco network designed with the highest security, speed and reliability, Real Madrid will be able to offer innovative experiences to its fans in the stadium and around the world, as well as optimize various operational processes on the field such as communications or safety.

In addition, more than 1,000 screens managed by Cisco’s comprehensive Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) solution -which combines high-definition video distribution with state-of-the-art digital signage – will allow the club to increase fan participation throughout the complex and provide them an enthralling experience.

Pointed out Wendy Mars, President, Cisco EMEAR, “Real Madrid is one of the jewels in the crown of the world of sport. We are delighted to add such a storied club to the global cast of sports institutions Cisco works with, and we look forward to uniting the power of our two global brands to drive a more connected and inclusive future for soccer.”

Stated Andreu Vilamitjana, General Director of Cisco Spain, “Cisco’s commitment to the digitization of the country, materialized in Spain through our Digitize Program, has now also reached the sports industry. The Santiago Bernabéu Stadium is already reinventing the future of entertainment in sports venues, providing fans with unforgettable experiences and facilitating high quality content. We are really excited to team up with Real Madrid to take fan interaction to the next level.”

For his part, Emilio Butragueño, Director of Institutional Relations at Real Madrid CF, pointed out, “Thanks to this collaboration agreement with Cisco, a leader in connectivity and content management, the new Santiago Bernabéu Stadium ensures that it can carry data, voice and video at any point and thus guarantee the widest range of services and an unparalleled spectacle in the world of football.”

Cisco solutions have provided the technological underpinning to the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium for several years now. The above collaboration will allow the club to further strengthen its reputation as a global leader in innovation and leverage Cisco’s experience and expertise to keep the stadium at the forefront of technology for years to come.

For more than a decade, Cisco solutions for the sports and entertainment industry have been used by hundreds of leading sports venues, teams, events, and organizations around the world, such as the 70,000-capacity SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California (US), the Olympic and Paralympic Games, the City Football Group, Riot Games (video game developer), the National Football League (NFL) of the United States, and many more.

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