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O2 To Track Music Fans’ Movements & Behaviour At Academy Venues

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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O2 extends agreement to sponsor Academy Venues, getting more Priority Tickets and to install tech that will monitor gigs and crowds

O2 will install technology to monitor and analyse crowd behaviour at gigs across 19 music venues in the UK as part of an extended ten year commercial agreement with the Academy Music Group and Live Nation. 

A combination of proprietary technology and “complex analysis” will look at the movements of music fans, providing insights such as calories burned, noise generated and the most popular moment of the night. 

Fans will also receive a free “digital memento” at the end of the performance. This will include highlights that can be shared on social media. All this can be access via free O2 Wi-Fi at the venues. 

The O2

O2 Academy deal  

These initiatives are designed to engage fans, encourage people to visit certain venues and give artists feedback about how their fans enjoy the show. For example one song might receive a much bigger reaction in one venue compared to another. 

O2 says it has successfully trialled the technology, which will also be deployed at The O2 in London. The network secured the naming rights to the former Millennium Dome in 2005 and extended that agreement for another decade in February. 

“We are incredibly proud of our partnership with O2 which has revolutionised the way brands work within the live sector,” said Paul Latham, COO of Live Nation UK. 

“This is more than just a naming rights deal. Over the last nine years, we have worked tirelessly together to build the O2 Academy brand, investing in these iconic buildings and giving O2 customers access to millions of Priority tickets.   

“Close to four million live music fans come through O2 Academy doors each year to see the artists they love, across the UK. Continuing this deal with O2 ensures that these venues remain a vibrant part of their local communities and an integral part of Britain’s healthy live music market.” 

‘Priority Tickets’ let O2 customers apply for tickets up to 48 hours before general release. While a kick in the teeth to other music fans, this is a significant differentiator for the O2 network which has sought to increase its association with the industry over the past decade. 

Indeed, more than 25 million ‘Priority’ tickets at 35,000 shows across more than 400 venues have been sold since the partnership was established in 2008. As part of the deal, the number of Priority Tickets at Academy venues will double. 

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