BIRMINGHAM, AL — Media systems integrator, MediaMerge, announced Monday, March 29, 2004, that it has entered into a multi-year agreement to provide technical support for the Tuttleman IMAX Theater in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
MediaMerge, in cooperation with the IMAX Corporation, will be responsible for providing preventative maintenance and technical support for the theater’s world-class audio and projection systems.
Under the agreements MediaMerge provides a technician to meet the requirements of the IMAX Service Partnership Program. In this arrangement each theater operates as usual, and MediaMerge provides 24-hour phone support, preventative maintenance, and emergency service visits. The theaters still have service agreements directly with IMAX, while MediaMerge provides the labor at a significant savings. IMAX provides all replacement parts, phone support, and limited on-site service.
The Service Partnership Program was launched by IMAX in 2001 as an effort to offer a cost-saving alternative to theaters interested in lowering their annual service fees. In exchange for assuming more responsibility in maintaining their IMAX system, eligible theaters recognize a reduction in their annual IMAX maintenance fees.
MediaMerge, Inc. was founded in February 2001, by Tim Ogletree and Ken McKibben to provide design, installation, service, and support for audio, video, control, acoustics, and theatrical lighting systems. The two met while working at Birmingham-based Sonics Associates where Ogletree worked as a system designer, and McKibben worked as a Service Technician for North America.
The company’s customer-base consists primarily of houses of worship and other facilities utilizing media systems to deliver high-impact audio and visual presentations. Since its inception, MediaMerge has been growing at a steady pace and currently has ongoing church installation projects in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Texas, and West Virginia.
In late 2002 Doug Jackson, formerly a Regional Manager for IMAX Technical Services, joined the MediaMerge team and formed the MediaMerge Technical Services Group to provide service and support to the existing client-base. Recognizing the unique opportunity afforded by the IMAX Service Partnership Program, Jackson moved quickly to include the IMAX program as part of the company’s service offering.
MediaMerge expanded into the IMAX market in May of 2003 signing agreements to provide service to the IMAX Theaters at the Gulf Coast Exploreum in Mobile, Alabama, and the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida. In July of 2003 MediaMerge picked up the St. Louis Science Center Omnimax in St. Louis, Missouri. The Desert IMAX Theater in Cathedral City, California, and the TI Founders IMAX Theater in Dallas, Texas, were added in December of 2003.
The Tuttleman IMAX Theater is the sixth theater MediaMerge has signed agreements with to-date. MediaMerge is currently the largest third-party IMAX servicing agent in the world.