CinemaNext, the European specialist in cinema exhibitor services, today announced that the UK Digital Funding Partnership (DFP), the ground-breaking project established by the CEA (now UK Cinema Association) and dcinex (now CinemaNext) to allow over 100 small and medium-sized cinema operators to digitise their sites across the United Kingdom, reached recoupment earlier this year.
The DFP programme was designed by Steve Perrin and Phil Clapp, working with dcinex to assist 300 UK screens across 120 exhibitors to digitise their screens and ensure they could continue to show first run films to their audiences.
Dcinex provided the funding for the DFP, recouping its investment primarily through Virtual Print Fees (VPF) paid by film distributors. Three spares depot were also established in the UK, together with a remote support facility (NOC) at its headquarters in Belgium to ensure a fast response time to any technical issues.
On reaching the full recoupment point, all DFP members have taken full ownership of the digital projection equipment funded through the scheme and have seen the removal of restrictions on content per the VPF scheme.
“By any measure, the DFP has proven to be successful, enabling a significant number of smaller cinema operators to make the transition from 35mm to the new digital projector technology, and helping to ensure that no sites were ‘lost’ during the process,” said Jerry Murdoch, Country Manager for CinemaNext UK & Ireland. “All equipment supplied by dcinex under the DFP carries a 10-year parts manufacturer’s warranty, with the exception of any equipment previously owned by the cinema and which was purchased by dcinex from the exhibitor and rolled into the DFP. Even though the contract has now ended, the warranty conditions remain, and DFP members continue to have the comfort of knowing that spare parts will be supplied free of charge. They will, however, need to have a manufacturer agreed support contract in place to ensure that spare parts are provided under their warranty.”
Welcoming the news, UK Cinema Association Chief Executive Phil Clapp added: “The UK cinema industry as a whole should be hugely proud of the success of the UK Digital Funding Partnership. We would not have reached this point without support from a wide range of partners. That includes the major cinema circuits, who helped fund the Partnership’s establishment, those smaller operators who put their faith in the model and colleagues in film distribution whose financial contributions made this all achievable. And in CinemaNext of course we could not have picked a more supportive partner.”
CinemaNext is the largest cinema exhibition services company in EMEA, providing smart, comprehensive solutions across the board, from projection equipment, audio systems, central systems, premium cinema solutions, cinema outfitting, content management, 3D projection systems & glasses, TMS, digital signage, screens to consulting services. Clients enjoy the highest level of reliability and lowest cost of ownership through our various services: consulting, design & project management, equipment sales and financing, installation, maintenance, support (NOC), online monitoring, content management, spare and consumables, service agreements and supply chain & logistics. 13,000 screens have been installed by our technicians to date. 9,500 screens in Europe currently avail of service contracts with our company. CinemaNext’s main office is located in Liège-Blegny (Belgium). Regional offices can be found in 26 countries across Europe, Africa and the Middle East. For more information, please connect to https://www.cinemanext.com
About UK Cinema Association
The UK Cinema Association (UKCA) represents the interests of over 90 per cent of UK cinema operators by number and market share. Its membership ranges from single screen/owner managed sites to the largest circuit and multiplex operators.