Rogers Communications Inc. said it will invest $700 million in branding, mobile services, and retail stores in Alberta over the next four years as it steps up competition with Telus Corp. Rogers said in a release Tuesday that, as part of the spending, it reached a multi-year sponsorship partnership with the Edmonton Oilers and its arena, Rexall Place. Rogers now has the “telecommunications sponsorship” of the Oilers, the release said, covering brand and advertising placements, arena signage and advertising, as well as sponsorship of Oilers television broadcasts, the Oilers website and the official Oilers Mobile App. The release said Rogers has invested more than $1 billion over the past decade in “network enhancements” and expansions in Alberta, where Telus has the highest market share in mobile wireless services. The $700 million will also go to expanding the company's fourth-generation LTE network and opening new retail locations, Rogers said. John Boynton, executive vice-president and chief marketing officer at Rogers, said in a phone interview the investments will cover new or stronger mobile networks in Alberta's oilfields to support the sale of machine-to-machine devices and applications. \tBoynton said the company is also considering new mobile team or stadium apps for Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd. \tRogers and BCE Inc. jointly own MLSE, which operates the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Toronto Raptors and the Toronto FC soccer team. Rogers has expressed an interest in building in-stadium sports apps, The Wire Report reported last month.