In a collaboration initiated in Stockholm, Sweden between Korean president, Lee Myung-bak and Ericsson’s newly appointed CEO, Hans Vestberg, Ericsson will work with Korean companies to develop solutions to use mobile broadband and other communication technologies, such as machine to machine (m2m), to reduce global carbon emissions and achieve a more sustainable society.
According to a statement from the Korean presidential office, Ericsson has pledged some US$1.5 billion in investment over the next five years, including the set up of a R&D and testing facility for 4G, or LTE. Ericsson is also planning to expand its employee base from 80 to 1,000 in the country.
The announcement is significant in that Ericsson has never been a big player in Korea due to the country’s selection of CDMA as its 2G platform and the dominance of Korea vendors, Samsung and LG in the market. It also confirms Ericsson’s new CEO’s direction in continuing major climate change initiatives put in place by the current CEO, Carl-Henric Svanberg, who is stepping down in January to become chair of the global resources firm, BP.
Lee Myung-Bak, President of Korea, said: “Ericsson could play a vital role for Korea’s evolution in the ICT market and for Korean export companies. We are certain that by developments in the ICT area we will take needed steps to a more sustainable future. We expect to see more of Ericsson in the Korean business landscape”.
Hans Vestberg, Ericsson’s CFO and incoming CEO highlighted that society faces a huge challenge to drastically reduce CO2 emissions by 2050, while the world economy as much as triples. “Telecommunications and IT technology will play a vital role in transforming cities and countries through smarter broadband solutions. As one of the world’s most advanced nations in the use of ICT, Korea has the opportunity to create a green eco-system and become a great example for the rest of the world.”