AAV exits Digital Media services with sale to Omnilab
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AAV Exits Digital Media Services With Sale To Omnilab

11 August 2005 The Chief Executive Officer of AAV Limited, Michael Gardner, announced today that the Company has sold its Digital Media Services operations to Omnilab Pty Limited for $5million.

The sale follows the announcement by AAV‚s Chairman, Bob Mansfield on 14 June 2005 that AAV would divest its Digital Media Services group to focus on core assets in the area of Event Services via its ownership of Staging Connections and Media Manufacturing via its joint venture vehicle, AAV Regency.

Mr Gardner said that the companies within AAV‚s Digital Media Services group that form part of the sale are Digital Pictures Sydney and Melbourne, Iloura Melbourne and Comcopy Imagestream, AAV‚s digital media broadcast facility in Auckland, New Zealand as well as AAV‚s 50% stake in DubSat which delivers Omnilab full ownership of this unique digital streaming business.

Companies currently housed under the Omnilab banner include; VFX, animation, telecine and design company, The Lab Sydney; Editing house, Island Films; Facilitator of playout and broadcast for the Pay TV industry, The Playroom Sydney; sound and editing business, Cornerpost and film and television production company Ambience Entertainment.

In a joint statement Michael Gardner and Grahame Mapp, Chairman of the Omnilab Group said that the sale of AAV‚s Digital Media Services group to Omnilab was an outstanding outcome for all parties and placed the businesses in an environment with a perfect cultural fit.

„The consolidation of AAV‚s Digital Pictures Network within the Omnilab Group will create a number of synergistic brands capable of delivering an unparalleled range of services both locally and internationally,š they said.

The Omnilab Group‚s Managing Director, Christopher Mapp added „I have long been an admirer of the high calibre of creativity and post production excellence provided by AAV‚s Digital Pictures Network and very much look forward to working with the Digital Pictures team in continuing to meet and exceed clients‚ expectations.š

AAV Limited (AVV) is a publicly listed enterprise which is listed on the ASX. .ABOUT AAV‚s DIGITAL MEDIA SERVICES GROUP AAV‚s post production business was established in Melbourne in 1974. AAV acquired the specialist Iloura VFX and animation business and Digital Pictures Sydney in 1993 and went on to acquire the Sydney based GMD and Kotij businesses in 2002. AAV‚s post production interests were rebranded under the Digital Pictures banner in 2000. AAV established the New Zealand based facility in 1986. The unique DubSat digital streaming technology was first conceived by AAV in 1995 and launched in 2000.

The Digital Pictures Network has an established reputation in the local and international film and advertising markets for its high quality creative and technical services. The VFX, animation and post production group, which was recently nominated for an Emmy award for its VFX work on the US miniseries, Farscape: the Peacekeeper Wars, is currently working on a number of major international film projects including Paramount Pictures‚ Charlotte's Web, the BBC co-production, Irresistible, the Chinese epic, Seven Swords and Sony Pictures‚ Ghost Rider.

Digital Pictures is also working on a number of local film and television productions including The Magician, Little Oberon, Mortified, Caterpillar Wish, Heartbreak Tour, Macbeth, Wicked Science, The Alice, Love My Way, Headlands and Candy. Additionally the Digital Pictures provides a range of high-end VFX and animation services to television commercial clients in Australia and Asia with campaigns for Raspberry Coke (NZ), Mini Ritz Stork, Visa Piggy Bank , Quit , Honda Rhino, Myer Mega Mart, Lux Super Rich and Hyundai.

Omnilab (formerly Omnicon) was originally founded in 1982 and through a program of acquisition and strategic growth is now one of Australia‚s leading media services groups.

The Omnilab Group‚s animation, VFX, telecine and design house, The Lab Sydney‚s 3D animation studio is in the final stages of part-animation on the feature film Happily Never After and has just completed full animation on the American educational program, Obesity.

The studio‚s recent campaigns include commercials for Canon, LUX, Hyundai‚s őA‚ League Soccer Launch with Director David Slade from RSA USA., Pascal‚s Marshmallows for Director Jeff Darling and VEGA‚ s Fm‚s controversial launch campaign őChomped‚.

The Lab Sydney has also recently renewed with Millennium Television to post produce the Logie award winning series, McLeod‚s Daughters.

The numerous divisions of The Omnilab Group are unique in services yet closely aligned which allows regular collaboration on projects . Recent example‚s of collaboration include director Quan Do‚s first feature, Footy Legends, and Gillian Armstrong‚s telemovie, A Colourful Life, where Island Films performed the offline and The Lab Sydney completed the telecine rushes, colour grading and mastering.

The Omnilab Group‚s facilitator of production and play-out services for the pay-TV and multimedia industries, The Playroom Sydney earlier this year renewed their contact with The Movie Network channels for production and broadcast services. Other Playroom Sydney clients include, MTV Australia, VH1 and the Ovation Channel who all utilise the Playroom Sydney‚s facilities including the Playroom‚s digital studio.

Omnilab‚s production arm, Ambience Entertainment currently has a raft of projects in various stages of development and are currently hosting a Chinese cast and crew who are in Sydney filming the 20 part drama series, őWait for Me in Sydney‚. őWait for me in Sydney‚ will be screened on CCTV early next year with an estimated audience of 900million people.