Ericsson is following LG Electronics’ decision to withdraw from MWC Barcelona 2020 due to concerns over the recent coronavirus outbreak.
The two telecom companies explained the health and safety of employees and customers are the main reason they have reached this decision.
Ericsson came to the decision earlier today after closely monitoring the development of the coronavirus outbreak. Börje Ekholm, President and CEO, Ericsson, said, “The health and safety of our employees, customers and other stakeholders are our highest priority. This is not a decision we have taken lightly. We were looking forward to showcasing our latest innovations at MWC in Barcelona. It is very unfortunate, but we strongly believe the most responsible business decision is to withdraw our participation from this year’s event.”
LG pulled out of GSMA MWC last week through a statement on its website, “With the safety of its employees, partners and customers foremost in mind, LG has decided to withdraw from exhibiting and participating in MWC 2020 later this month in Barcelona, Spain. This decision removes the risk of exposing hundreds of LG employees to international travel which has already become more restrictive as the virus continues to spread across borders.”
The company also announced that in lieu of its participation in MWC, LG will be holding separate events in the near future to announce its 2020 mobile products.
Chinese-based ZTE has decided to cancel its Devices Press conference scheduled on February 25, although it is still planning on attending the event. Huawei’s officials have said they have no intention of withdrawing, but are coming up with ways to mitigate against disruption.
#ZTE will participate in #MWC20 Barcelona as planned, showcasing comprehensive #5G end-to-end solutions and a wide variety of 5G devices. ZTE’s booth is in 3F30, Hall 3, FIRA GRAN VIA. pic.twitter.com/vB9S4IpyZP
— ZTE Corporation (@ZTEPress) February 5, 2020
GSMA, the organiser of MWC, released a statement following Ericsson withdrawal, stating, “The GSMA regret to see Ericsson’s decision not to attend MWC Barcelona this year as they are an important player in our ecosystem. We respect their decision and are reassured by their commitment that they will be at MWC Barcelona 2021 in full force and our rebook trends for next year’s event remain high.”
GSMA also explained it continues to monitor and assess the potential impact of the Coronavirus on MWC Barcelona 2020, the world’s largest mobile trade show.