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Singapore—Nov 19, 2003

IDA & the MDA jointly develop Singapore’s Digital Cinema Industry

Digital Cinema as Key Engine Of Growth for Singapore
The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) and the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) are collaborating to develop the Digital Cinema industry in Singapore, riding on the combined strengths of both agencies. IDA’s efforts in building capabilities and capacity in processing, management and distribution of digital content complements MDA’s efforts in nurturing content development. Together, both agencies will ensure a complete pull-through from content creation to exhibition in the Digital Cinema space.

Digital Cinema heralds a new era for the cinema industry. Digital Cinema is about the digital transformation of today’s celluloid film-based distribution and exhibition systems. This transformation is considered to be the most significant technological advancement in the cinema industry since the advent of digital sound. It opens up many new possibilities – greater variety of content, lower cost of distribution and exhibition of better quality. In turn, this will open doors to greater business opportunities for the local Infocomm and Media industry, and potentially create up to 5,0001 jobs over the next three years in areas such as post-production and infrastructural support.

IDA and the MDA recognise that globally, important changes are underway in the cinema distribution market due to the ability of Infocomm and Media technologies to move and manage content in bits and bytes. This emerging digital delivery will change the manner in which businesses deliver movies and entertainment to audiences worldwide, and how consumers experience movie-watching in cinemas. For instance, movie-distributors can save on reel duplication costs as well as encrypt digital content to ensure greater security and prevent piracy. Movie-goers can also enjoy the latest block-bluster movies with simultaneous releases or the transmission of ‘live’ concerts from other countries. In view of the significant impact that Infocomm technology will have on the cinema industry and the significant2 growth potential, IDA and the MDA are therefore taking the lead to develop the Digital Cinema industry and to stake Singapore’s position as an early-mover in the digital space.

Taking the first step to develop Singapore’s Digital Cinema industry is the IDA-MDA collaboration with Eng Wah Organization to turn 20 of its cinema screens digital, and installing another outdoor screen at the Legends Fort Canning Park over the next one year. IDA and the MDA are supporting Eng Wah’s Digital Cinema roll-out in the areas of equipping these 21 screens with leading edge digital equipment, fibre and satellite connectivity as well as manpower capability development.

Speaking at the launch of Eng Wah Organization’s digital cinema deployment, IDA Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Tan Ching Yee, said, “IDA is excited about Eng Wah’s launch. The application of Infocomm technology in entertainment promises significant cost-savings, new economic activities and jobs, and a superior movie-going experience. Singapore is now a step closer in our quest to be a leading global Digital Exchange where not just capital, people and ideas but also digital assets come together. Through this, IDA targets to increase the value of digital transactions through Singapore from the current S$150million to S$500million by 2006."

Mr. Lim Hock Chuan, the Chief Executive Officer of the MDA said, "The MDA is excited by the potential and prospects of digital media. We are happy to support Eng Wah as it takes the step in converting its cinema screens to digital cinema. We believe that digital cinema will take off in a big way as more filmmakers and cinema operators adopt the technology. This will in turn make the transmission and screening of movies, advertisements, trailers and other digital content such as concerts and sports events in cinemas possible. Deploying digital media is a strategy under the MDA's Media 21 strategy to develop Singapore into a vibrant global media city. The initiative announced today brings us a step closer towards that vision."

Commenting on the launch, Ms. Goh Min Yen, Managing Director, Eng Wah Organization Ltd., said, “As the only publicly-listed movie exhibitor and distributor, Eng Wah has always been keen to venture into higher value-added areas, where cinema technology is concerned, to enhance shareholder value. The impact of efficiencies and savings from Digital Cinema to our cinema operations, on top of the enhanced cinema experience, will be significant. We are indeed proud to partner IDA and the MDA on this far-sighted initiative. The valueadd to the media industry and the opportunities to create knowledge- and technology-driven niche industries in Singapore will be immense.”

"We applaud the forward thinking vision of both IDA and the MDA in strongly supporting this Digital Cinema initiative," said Mr. Sjoerd De Clerck, Managing Director of Barco Digital Cinema. "This further enhances the leading technology role Singapore already enjoys in the region and therefore we are proud to be associated with this initiative as well as with Eng Wah organization who once again show a tremendous enthusiasm to invest in technology to enhance productivity and Customer Service for the benefit of the movie going patron", he continued.

Dr Chong Man Nang, GDC Technology CEO said, “Singapore has chosen the best time to develop the Digital Cinema industry. The recent announcement from DCI on the studios’ consensus to adopt the 2K and 4K specifications for projectors and servers for Multiplex are indications of the growing maturity of Digital Cinema technologies. We are pleased to supply Eng Wah Organization the most advanced GDC Technology’s real-time Cineplex Central Server that can help schedule any movies to playback on any screens, hence maximizing the revenue from all category of movies. This would be the world’s first full Digital Cinema Multiplex’s installation. GDC Technology seeks to establish a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship with Eng Wah Organization, IDA and the MDA, and provide Singapore with the most advanced products and services she needs to help her grow and compete in the era of digital entertainment.”

The IDA-MDA collaboration with Eng Wah is an exciting first step that will stimulate S$9 million in industry spending over the next one year and trigger demand for equipment purchase and supporting services such as digital content processing, storage, management and distribution. It will also bring about manpower training to upgrade the skills set of the industry. This Digital Cinema deployment will position Singapore as a leader in Digital Cinema in Asia.

Barco Contacts:

Stephanie Vlegels

Stephanie Vlegels
Press and PR contact EMEA
Barco nv
Telephone +32 56 36 81 66

Tyler West Tyler West
Corporate Marketing Director, North America
Barco nv
Telephone +1 678-512-6107

Vickie Yueh Vickie Yueh
Press and PR contact APAC and GRC
Barco nv
Telephone +886 2 8771 0228

GDC Technology Limited Contacts:
Media Contact:   Tony Adamson

GDC Technology Limited
Unit 1-7, 20th Floor, Kodak House II, 
39 Healthy Street East, North Point, Hong Kong 
Tel: + 852 2507 9555    Fax:+852 2579 1131
Logo: Barco Digital Cinema About Barco Digital Cinema: Barco, a global technology company, designs and develops networked visualization products for the Entertainment, Enterprise and Healthcare markets. Barco has its own facilities for Sales & Marketing, Customer Support, R&D and Manufacturing in Europe, North America and APAC. Barco (NYSE Euronext Brussels: BAR) is active in more than 90 countries with 3,300 employees worldwide. Barco posted sales of 1.029 billion euro in 2015. 

Barco is one of three licencees of Texas Instruments DLP Cinema™ technology. TI developed DLP Cinema™ technology working in close cooperation with Barco and others in the movie industry, to develop Cinema Projector and support systems based on DMD™ technology, to meet the requirement of studios, film distributors and exhibitors alike.
Barco Digital Cinema Directory page Barco Digital Cinema Web Site Logo: GDC Technology Limited About GDC Technology Limited: GDC Technology Limited (‘GDC’) is a leading digital cinema solutions provider. GDC develops, manufactures and sells media servers, content storage systems, theatre management systems and network operations center software for the global cinema industry. GDC is a licensee of the DTS:X object-based immersive sound technology from DTS, Inc. for the development of its media servers.  In addition, GDC also provides a suite of digital cinema products and services, including integrated projection systems, 3D products, projector lamps and silver screens. GDC Digital Cinema Network Limited, a GDC subsidiary, manages VPF for over 6,300 theatre screens and with more than 650 studios or motion picture distributors worldwide. GDC Technology Limited Directory page GDC Technology Limited Web Site About Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore: The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is committed to growing Singapore into a dynamic global infocomm hub. IDA uses an integrated approach to developing infocommunications in Singapore. This involves nurturing a competitive telecoms market as well as a conducive business environment with programmes and schemes for both local and international companies. For more information, visit Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore Directory page About Media Development Authority of Singapore: The Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) aims to develop Singapore into a global media city. Its Media 21 strategy seeks to create a vibrant environment for the industry and public via five key thrusts: establish Singapore as a media exchange; export 'Made-by-Singapore' content; internationalise local media companies; nurture local media talent and develop digital media. Media Development Authority of Singapore Directory page About Eng Wah Organization Ltd.: Founded in the 1940s in post-war Singapore, the Eng Wah Group is the first cinema operator to be publicly-listed in the Stock Exchange of Singapore (SGX). The Group is a leading film exhibitor and distributor with 29 strategically located cinema screen halls with a capacity of over 6,700 seats. The Group’s leisure and lifestyle entertainment investments and services include the management of modern entertainment complexes that offer modern multiple screen halls, amusement arcades, restaurants and lifestyle retail stores. The Group earned an annual sales turnover of S$20.9 million in FY 2003 and employs 140 staff. Eng Wah Organization Ltd. Directory page
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