More than 120 MBA students have been tasked with improving the UEFA Euro 2024 match-day experience as part of its Innovation Challenge, with the winning project having created an RFID wristband.

The governing body of European football’s 2019 Innovation Challenge named the ‘Euroband’ project the top prize. The Euroband uses contactless technology to automatically identify and track tags attached to objects around the event.

In addition, fans can use the wristband as a match ticket and track their families’ whereabouts during the tournament. The Euroband could also be used to purchase refreshments and other items during matches being staged in stadiums or shown live in official fan zones.

Eighteen teams took part in the challenge, and each group created ideas, identified business models and held discussions with UEFA specialists, before pitching their final proposals to a jury comprising UEFA experts.

Andrea Traverso, UEFA’s managing director of financial sustainability and research, said: “The 2019 UEFA Innovation Challenge has been a unique opportunity to leverage the skills, insights and knowledge of these students while supporting them on their educational journey.

“As consumer and fan trends are changing more rapidly than ever before, it is key for UEFA to gain insights from outside of our core business to help us in staying at the cutting edge.”

UEFA, ThinkSport, as well as MBA students from the IMD Business School, and design students from ECAL/University of Art and Design Lausanne were involved in the challenge.

The judges considered criteria such as utility to fans, business value (including feasibility), originality, quality of evidence and effectiveness of the presentation.

Images: UEFA.com