Gearhouse outlines ME ambitions

Company confirms technology acquisitions, reveals expansion plans.
Gearhouse has played a key role in the production of a number of major events in the region, including Robbie Williams' 2006 gig in Dubai.
Gearhouse has played a key role in the production of a number of major events in the region, including Robbie Williams' 2006 gig in Dubai.


Dubai-based production services company Gearhouse Staging Connections (GSC) has outlined its plans for the Middle East market, following its relocation to new 7,000sqm premises in Dubai Investment Park.

The new office and warehouse headquarters is around five times the size of Gearhouse's former site, which was located in the Al Quoz area of Dubai.

The office relocation comes more than 12 months after the company was officially incorporated. The creation of GSC was a result of Australian-based Staging Connections acquisition of a 51% stake in Dubai production rental company Gearhouse for an estimated US$10m in October 2006.


Nigel Pinto, sales director of GSC, said the merged entity enjoyed a number of important benefits, particularly in regards to Staging Connections' massive international reach. The company employs more than 1100 staff based in 90 locations worldwide.

"The deal with Staging Connections affects us more in terms of our marketing and branding strategies," Pinto explained.

"We had already purchased the land for the new warehouse when this deal was finalised. Staging Connections has achieved great commercial success focusing on its PR, marketing and venue services operations. It is this experience we hope to benefit from as a result of the new arrangement."

Spurred on by its additional warehouse space, the company is currently making significant investments in new technology.

It recently purchased 100sqm of Lighthouse technology LED panels and 10 channels of Shure UHF-R Wireless microphone systems.

Pinto also indicated that GSC intends to diversify its own service offering to focus on new areas such as set-building and flight case manufacturing.

"The flight case business would initially manufacture cases for our use, but long-term we would look to sell product to third-party clients as well," said Pinto.

"This is something that had already been part of our plans for some time."

Staging Connections recently acquired UK-based Essential Lighting, which also manufactures flight cases. Pinto said GSC planned to send a number of staff to the company's UK base to inspect its warehousing system, lighting stock and its flight case business.

"We're also looking to expand many aspects of our staging department," he explained. "This would include establishing the set building operation.

"Staging Connections has developed its own IT infrastructure which we plan to roll out later this quarter. We expect this development to have a major impact on our business, in terms of gaining access to a database of clients and supporting our new warehouse operations."

As part of the Staging Connections group, Pinto expects GSC to also gain access to an expanded equipment inventory shared with other Staging Connections businesses.

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