“We are seeing exhibitors worldwide embrace laser projection to create unparalleled cinemagoing experiences”
Industry Report: Distribution, Exhibition and Streaming
Carl Rijsbrack • CMO, Cinionic
During our chat, we delved into the reasons for the present and future success of laser projection, and Cinionic’s mission to make theatrical exhibition greener
Cineuropa caught up with Carl Rijsbrack, CMO at Belgium’s Cinionic. During our chat, we discussed the benefits brought by laser projection, why it is a green choice and how it is spreading in theatres across Europe and worldwide.
Cineuropa: Could you talk through Cinionic’s main activities? What’s your mission?
Carl Rijsbrack: Cinionic was founded in 2018 as a dedicated joint venture between Barco, CGS, and ALPD to focus on cinema technology and solutions. Today, we are the leader in laser projection, committed to creating a new visual standard and moving the cinema industry forward. Our future-ready cinema solutions and services portfolio features award-winning laser projection, integrated media servers, vendor-financing, innovative business models and more. From premium to boutique, we deliver a laser solution for every screen. Day-to-day, this means we get the privilege of illuminating screens around the world to create memorable cinemagoing experiences.
Why is laser projection a greener choice? What type of added value does it bring?
Both the world and cinema are changing, and as a part of that change, we are committed to sustainability and taking responsible actions to protect our planet. An example of this is our move to an all-laser projection portfolio. In doing so, we deliver enhanced visual performance and increased cinemagoer satisfaction while also improving operational efficiencies and reducing resource consumption.
Traditional lamp-based projectors have significant impacts on the environment. Laser projection offers a better way to power cinematic moments thanks to the experiential and environmental benefits. In Europe, all cinema projectors can use as much as 700 GWh per year in energy consumption. For comparison, if all of these were powered by laser, we’d use up to 78% less energy.
When we consider added value, it may mean many things to many people. With laser projection and our environmentally conscious approach, we enable cinema owners to elevate the experience, lower costs, and reduce their carbon footprint.
How is laser projection spread throughout Europe? What about the rest of the world?
The laser era is definitely here. We are seeing exhibitors worldwide embrace laser projection to create unparalleled cinemagoing experiences. In 2021, Cinionic reached a milestone in the industry, with laser projection now powering more than 30,000 screens worldwide. This continues the trend for laser for every screen that has been consistently building since its introduction. In Europe, we have seen a huge increase in the adoption of laser projection solutions with our customers, confirming our strategic direction enabled with our all-laser portfolio.
When considering the future of cinema worldwide, laser is also the de facto choice. Whether it’s renewing existing projection infrastructure, opening a new build, launching a premium experience, opening a micro-theatre, or upgrading older units with our Laser Light Upgrade solution, laser has become the standard for the next generation of cinemagoing.
Why does laser projection require less on-site maintenance?
Traditional lamp-powered projectors require regular maintenance to keep operations running smoothly and maintain light output. Laser projection eliminates the need for lamps — and lamp replacement — and offers consistently brilliant images with less oversight and interventions required. The light source is only part of the story here.
Throughout our many years in the cinema industry, we’ve worked hand-in-hand with exhibitors to develop new solutions collaboratively. We call this process co-creation, and thanks to this, we’re able to find innovative solutions to the needs of cinemas today and tomorrow.
The Barco Series 4 laser projection family from Cinionic, launched in 2019, is a prime example of this co-creation effort. Alongside the inherent advantages of laser, we looked at the end-to-end needs of exhibition to deliver a next-generation projection with brilliant images, intelligent fit-and-forget features, industry-leading eco-efficiency, and a future-ready design to meet tomorrow’s needs. These four pillars, underpinning the philosophy of Barco Series 4, have resulted in a laser-powered projection with smart features, ultra-low maintenance, and operation efficiency.
Theatres worldwide are already benefiting from its integrated remote fleet management options, modular design, one tool interventions, smart notifications, and reductions in consumables. The result is better for the planet, operations, and, ultimately, the bottom line.
How important is sustainability in your business?
We are constantly innovating to develop new ways to deliver the best cinematic experiences for audiences worldwide and support the future of cinema. As part of this future-thinking mindset, we strive to offer solutions that deliver powerful results while looking after the environment.
Today, laser projection is a greener way to go to present films, producing less waste, decreased energy consumption, and leaving a lower carbon footprint. But for us it doesn’t end there. Solutions such as our Laser Light Upgrade allow theatres to upgrade legacy lamp-based projection to laser (by replacing the lamp light source), extending the lifetime of the equipment. We harness Barco’s eco-design policy to give each product an eco-score — taking into account design, energy, materials, packaging and logistics for the lifetime of the product. For us, sustainable business is good business.
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