The Digital Funding Partnership (UK), a limited liability partnership representing over 120 independent Exhibitors and some 400 screens in the UK has agreed to contract with XDC, the n°1 digital cinema service company in Europe. XDC's VPF funding scheme will facilitate the deployment of digital cinema systems with all DFP members.
Steve Perrin, Chief Executive of the DFP said: "XDC offered us an extremely competitive VPF financing solution and were very receptive to the individual needs of our members, offering them the widest possible choice of systems and complete freedom of choice of local integrator. Now the priority is to start the deployment as soon as possible, and we have agreed an aggressive schedule of 100 systems in the first 6 months.
The whole DFP initiative has received warm support from both the UK independent cinema sector as well as the major national exhibitors. This support has been invaluable. The fact that we are approaching the point of deployment will be welcomed by the whole UK industry."
Serge Plasch, XDC's CEO-Managing Director said "This is fantastic news for XDC, our team worked very hard to meet the needs of this special group. I think the DFP has a great concept and it matches very well with our territory recoupment structure. We are proud to be their partner in putting into practice this truly great scheme."
David Pope, XDC's Director of Operations for UK & IR added: "The mission of the DFP is to make sure that no one gets left behind in the switch over to digital cinema and the UK's rich heritage of small independent cinemas will be preserved thanks to this scheme. I would like to make a special thank you to our integrator partners who have been especially supportive in our bid to win the DFP contract"
Under the terms of the agreement with XDC, the DFP will have Series 2 DCI-compliant digital projection systems installed into the member exhibitor complexes, currently estimated at totalling over 400 screens. A content delivery network will also be implemented by XDC in order to allow distributors to deliver films directly by satellite and/or broadband connection to the cinemas, as well as giving the opportunity to receive live 2D and 3D transmissions.
All the systems will be connected to the XDC's NOC (Network Operations Centre) which will perform the hotline support and the preventative remote maintenance. Thanks to the sophisticated XDC's CineStore Data web-based application, the frontline support (with the possibility to have a full remote monitoring of the digital systems) will be directly managed by XDC's local integrator partners who will also take care of the installations and maintenance supported by XDC's NOC services.
The DFP are the largest independent grouping of cinema owners in Europe. The deployment is expected to be completed within 18-24 months making a substantial contribution to the overall digitisation of the UK cinema base.