New York, NY, USA (February 7, 2012) /PRNewswire/ — IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX; TSX: IMX) today announced it selected Barco 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.
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.
In the first phase of the partnership, the parties will integrate an enhancement of Barco’s existing Xenon-based projectors for use in IMAX’s current backlog and new system signings. This solution will be available in the second half of 2012. Simultaneously, Barco and IMAX will co-develop leading-edge laser technology. 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.”
Todd Hoddick, Vice President for the Barco Entertainment Division in North America, adds: “We are honored to have been selected by IMAX as their worldwide and exclusive digital projection technology partner. We are both excited and committed to bring the full weight of Barco’s operational excellence, integrity and ability to deliver on the ideals of the IMAX brand. Together we are determined to redefine the immersive cinema experience.”
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