NEW YORK, Feb. 7, 2012 /CNW/ - IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX; TSX: IMX) today announced it selected Barco (NYSE Euronext Brussels: BAR) to co-develop ground-breaking new laser projection technology for IMAX® theatres. The new IMAX digital laser projector will present greater brightness and clarity, a wider color gamut and deeper blacks, and consume less power and last longer than existing digital technology. This state-of-the-art solution, which will implement the patents IMAX exclusively licensed from Eastman Kodak Co. last year, will allow IMAX's entire global theatre network to show the highest-quality digital content available.
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Under the 7-year agreement, Barco will be IMAX's exclusive worldwide partner in the development of digital projection technology for use in IMAX theatres. As part of the partnership, the companies will collaborate to co-develop cutting-edge, next-generation laser projection technology based on IMAX intellectual property in image quality, Barco's unique laser innovations and the Kodak digital laser patents, which IMAX will sub-license to Barco.
The companies expect to deliver a joint solution to the market in the second half of 2012 for use in IMAX's current backlog and new system signings. Simultaneously, the companies will work together exclusively to manage the transition from Xenon-based to high-performance, laser-based projectors, which are expected to be deployed in 2013.
"As we continue to expand globally, it is critical that our technology partner keep pace with our ambitions around innovation and growth," said IMAX Chief Business Development Officer Robert D. Lister. "Barco is that partner. A leader in advanced digital and laser technology, Barco is well-known for its quality and integrity. We believe the result of this collaboration will further differentiate The IMAX Experience® for consumers, strengthening our value proposition for studios and exhibitors."
"We are honored to have been selected by IMAX as their worldwide and exclusive digital cinema technology partner," said Wim Buyens, Senior Vice President of Barco's Entertainment Division. "Together, we are committed to bringing the full weight of our operational excellence, integrity, and ability to deliver cutting-edge technology to bear in order to redefine the movie-going experience."
Barco, a global technology company, designs and develops visualization products for a variety of selected professional markets. Barco has its own facilities for Sales & Marketing, Customer Support, R&D and Manufacturing in Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. Barco (NYSE Euronext Brussels: BAR) is active in more than 90 countries with about 3,500 employees worldwide. Barco posted sales of 897 million euro in 2010.
About IMAX Corporation
IMAX Corporation is one of the world's leading entertainment and technology companies, specializing in the creation and delivery of premium, awe-inspiring entertainment experiences. With a growing suite of cutting-edge motion picture and sound technologies, and a globally recognized entertainment brand, IMAX is singularly situated at the convergence of the entertainment industry, innovation and the digital media world. The industry's top filmmakers and studios are utilizing IMAX theatres to connect with audiences in extraordinary ways, and as such, the IMAX network is among the most important and successful theatrical distribution platforms for major event films around the globe. The Company's new digital projection and sound systems - combined with a growing blockbuster film slate - are fueling the rapid expansion of the IMAX network in established markets such as North America, Western Europe, and Japan, as well as emerging markets such as China and Russia. IMAX theaters deliver the world's best cinematic presentations using proprietary IMAX®, IMAX® 3D, and IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-Mastering) technologies. IMAX DMR enables virtually any motion picture to be transformed into the unparalleled image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience®.
IMAX is headquartered in New York, Toronto and Los Angeles, with offices in London, Tokyo, Shanghai and Beijing. As of September 30, 2011, there were 583 IMAX theatres (441 commercial multiplex, 23 commercial destination and 119 institutional) operating in 48 countries.
IMAX®, IMAX® 3D, IMAX DMR®, Experience It In IMAX®, An IMAX 3D Experience® and The IMAX Experience® are trademarks of IMAX Corporation. More information about the Company can be found at www.imax.com. You may also connect with IMAX on Facebook (www.facebook.com/imax), Twitter (www.twitter.com/imax) and YouTube (www.youtube.com/imaxmovies).
This press release contains forward looking statements that are based on IMAX management's assumptions and existing information and involve certain risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed or implied by such forward looking statements. Important factors that could affect these statements include, but are not limited to, general economic, market or business conditions, including the length and severity of the current economic downturn, the opportunities that may be presented to and pursued by IMAX, the performance of IMAX DMR films, conditions in the in-home and out-of home entertainment industries, the signing of theatre system agreements, changes and developments in the commercial exhibition industry, the failure to convert theatre system backlog into revenue, new business initiatives, investments and operations in foreign jurisdictions, foreign currency fluctuations and IMAX's prior restatements and the related litigation. These factors and other risks and uncertainties are discussed in the Company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and most recent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q.
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