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You probably can’t wait for the download speeds of around 1GBps. But it doesn’t just mean better streaming quality or accessing websites in a blink of an eye on your mobile device. 5G networks are actually the key to the Internet of Things technology, providing the necessary infrastructure for managing huge amounts of data. They’re how we build a smarter and more connected world.

Łódzka Specjalna Strefa Ekonomiczna S.A. (Łódź Special Economic Zone), one of Poland’s 14 SEZs, and Ericsson, the world’s largest networking and telecommunications company, are well aware of the benefits of this new generation of connectivity. That’s why they are teaming up to help build and develop 5G-based solutions here in Poland. Recently, a letter of intent regarding partnership has been signed by the parties.

Ericsson and Łódź Special Economic Zone plan to provide support to innovative SMEs who focus on 5G-based solutions. Their work will not only contribute to the development of local businesses but also, on the national scale, whole industries. It will give the region a competitive advantage and encourage investors, especially those from the Industry 4.0 sector. It will also create new jobs and accelerate the digital transformation of cities. For now, Łódź has been chosen to be the first one in which a 5G network will be introduced.

However, the success of Łódź Special Economic Zone and Ericsson’s initiative will rely heavily on the entrepreneurs’ knowledge and understanding of the potential of 5G and the Internet of Things. That’s why the partners will organise trainings, which will raise awareness and give direction to the participants. This will, in turn, make the prospective commercial implementations of the new solutions easier.

“The philosophy of the implementation of 5G requires strong partnership — building an ecosystem of cooperating entities, education, planning and dialogue between local governments, citizens, investors, universities and others who can benefit from this technology,” said Martin Mellor, Ericsson’s Country Manager for Poland. “Ericsson hires over one thousand engineers in their R&D Centre in Łódź, working on implementing RFID technologies worldwide. It’s an example of the concrete actions our company is undertaking to contribute to the development of the city.”

Moreover, Łódź Special Economic Zone has also created a new S5 accelerator within their already-existing Startup Spark programme. It will support enterprises in building concepts of business and technological solutions based on 5G and, later, in obtaining funds for their realisation. Startup Spark also enables cooperation between young businesses and established players, among which you will find: Ericsson, PwC, Procter&Gamble, Robert Bosch, Siemens as well as local companies, which operate in many other countries abroad too: Pietrucha Group, Indigo Nails, Ceramika Paradyż, Bluerank, WDX, Mosty Łódź.