By: Andy Stout
Friday, February 10, 2012 - 12:00 pm
US rental giant Fletcher has opened a London office with an inventory comprising six of NAC Image Technology’s Hi-Motion II ultra slo-mo cameras, as well as Hi-Mo Is and I-MOVIX units. Based in Slough, the new office has its first gig this weekend with two EPL matches for Sky Sports.
Fletcher London officially opened on 6 February and this weekend’s matches, at Old Trafford and Villa Park respectively, also mark the UK debut of the Hi-Mo II after an extensive round of testing by Sky and other broadcasters and organisations across Europe and beyond. According to Dan Grainge, Vice President Sports, the units already have a full slate ahead of them too.
“We already have many jobs booked,” he says. “An international motor sports series, horse racing, cricket, the Isle of Man TT, football, we’ve done a demo for boxing and we’ve got an agreement in place for a big sporting event this summer for 12 systems, though we won’t own all of them.”
Though based in London, the office will operate globally on the one hand (as its servicing of the contract for the ‘international motor sports series’ shows) while taking full advantage of its location on the other (‘a big sporting event this summer’ being, of course, code for the Olympics). The timing though is not necessarily linked to London 2012
“What happened is that Arri in the UK is closing down its sports operation,” explains Grainge. “We have a very close relationship both with Arri and NAC, so they approached us and said would we be interested in taking the business over, both from an Arri and a NAC perspective. So, we decided to open with a bit of an overlap with Arri closing its operation in March.
“Quite a bit of work has already come our way and much of that is coming because Arri laid the foundations for it.”
Fletcher was, of course, the first customer for the Hi-Mo IIs (http://svgeurope.org/blog/blog/2011/10/13/nac-sells-first-hi-motion-iis/) buying a dozen back in October last year. “We purchased 12 systems, six for the UK market and six for the US market,” says Grainge. “They’re going to go over, they’re going to stay, that’s where they’ll live. We’re importing them as permanent imports.
“We have the capital budget to go in and invest in new cameras, and we expect to make a big impact in the UK and Europe with the camera, as well as in the US,” he continues. “We feel it can end up replacing some of the current high speed cameras as well as matching the truck cameras.”