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New AEG-backed MTS Live Arena bound for Moscow

Telco MTS, which also owns leading ticketing platform Ponominalu, will lend its name to the "flagship platform for large-scale concerts in Russia"

By Jon Chapple on 02 Oct 2019

MTS Live Arena in Moscow

image © MTS

MTS, Russia’s leading telecommunications operator and digital services provider, has signed an agreement to be the branding partner of, and help equip, a new 11,500-capacity arena in Moscow, set to open in 2020.

MTS (Mobile TeleSystems) – which also partially owns Russia’s two biggest entertainment ticket sellers – will provide high-speed mobile data network coverage throughout the venue, including 5G connectivity, and install ultra-high-resolution screens and smart parking, navigation, security and access control systems at the new MTS Live Arena, which is being built by developer Safmar Group near the Skolkovo Innovation Center (aka ‘Russia’s silicone valley’).

The deal between MTS and Safmar’s AND Corporation provides for an initial ten-year period of cooperation, with an option to extend. AEG is also on board as an international partner, says MTS – the US venues giant’s first property in Russia, after negotiations to operate Moscow’s VTB Arena fell through.

Alexey Kornya, MTS president and CEO, says the telco will help market events at the new arena via its ticketing platforms, Ticketland and Ponominalu, as well as broadcast performances via on-site VR streaming.

“We continue to expand into the experiential sphere,” explains Kornya. “The MTS Live Arena project complements our strategy to develop an entertainment ecosystem by leveraging synergies across our business lines, including e-ticketing, virtual and augmented reality, interactive OTT [over-the-top] content distribution and our proprietary mobile apps.

“Combining the expertise of AND Corporation, one of Russia’s largest developers, with MTS’s digital product capabilities will enable us to provide a new level of entertainment, including both world-class live performances by leading global stars [and] online content delivery to smartphones and other devices.”

“The MTS Live Arena project complements our strategy to develop an entertainment ecosystem”

When it opens in mid-2020, MTS Live Arena (pictured), the company says, will feature multiple seating levels “with optimal viewing from all areas”, as well as “world-class stage, lighting, and sound equipment”. “AEG’s participation will ensure the arena is on par with leading global concert venues,” it adds.

In addition to the VTB indoor arena, which has a capacity of 13,000 for concerts, other rival venues in Moscow include the 13,926-seat Megasport Sport Palace, CSKA Arena (14,000-cap.) and the 35,000-capacity Olympic Stadium, or Olimpiyskiy.

“Safmar Group is executing a variety of ambitious projects across the full spectrum of commercial real estate. The entertainment complex that we are building near the Skolkovo cluster will be a flagship platform for large-scale concerts in Russia,” comments Sait-Salam Gutseriev, general director of AND Corporation.

“The venue features a unique combination of advanced technologies, architectural solutions, design concepts and logistics accessibility standards. We are confident that MTS is the perfect partner to help develop this project, which can bring the perception of performances in our country to a new level.

“The innovative solutions that our partner plans to install at MTS Live Arena will provide viewers and attendees an unforgettable experience.”


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