Frightening as this may seem to many readers, there is a place beyond the reach of the M25. It’s a place where things are done differently, where little revolves around what’s happening in London, and which most people south of the Watford Gap probably imagine is constantly covered in snow and plagued by White Walkers. They call it ‘The North’ and it is a place often overlooked when it comes to custom install shows; but not any more…
Okay, I’m obviously taking the mickey – and I’m allowed, as I am originally from the very same, mostly moist, place at the top of the M6 that Invision picked to host their show, plus, pleasingly, they also chose the Victoria Warehouse as the venue, a building mere minutes on foot away from the place from my very own place of worship: Old Trafford.
OLD MEETS NEW
Built in the 1900s, the flesh and bones of Victoria Warehouse has stood as a symbol of Manchester’s industrial strength and innovation for around 100-years, making it the perfect venue to host Invision UK.
The second northern iteration of the Home Technology Showcase managed to attract over 100 visitors, that’s over 100 local custom installers who simply do not have the time to waste travelling down south to the more common trade shows, over 100 eager custom installers who were exposed to the install excellence of Steve Beahan, his team and the brands they represent properly and, possibly, for the first time.
So what exactly did Invision have to offer the fresh arrivals? Well, as per the show earlier this year down in Weybridge, the cream of the CI crop was out in force again, including the likes of Anthem, Aquavision, Artnovion, AudioControl, Autonomic, AV Racks, Comelit, Enado, ICE, Janus, JVC, LG, LILIN, Luxul, Moovia, Onkyo, Origin Acoustics, Paradigm, Pioneer, Pro Audio Technology, Pro Control, Rako, RTI, Screen Innovations, SIM2, Sony, Trinnov Audio and Wyrestorm.
Alongside the ample, innovative kit on display, visitors were also treated to a full programme of keynote speakers, namely Alex Camara from Audio Control, Jeff Curtis from Luxul talking on the Future of Wireless Technology, Wyrestorm’s James Meredith looking at Video Technology Shootout, and John Soden from Anthem. All talks were well-attended, and minor mic problems muddled through to deliver a day of real education.
Judging by the attendance levels of this second foray of Invision’s into the world of northern shows, I think it would be fair to say that it certainly won’t be the last. Indeed, when the word gets out about just how well the whole day worked this year, we can foresee HTS North becoming, not just a regular, annual even, but a much bigger concern with each subsequent show.
An impressive display by Steve Beahan and the team and one which, from a personally pleasing point of view, led to quite a few new SVI subscriptions too. But, leaving the last word to the man himself, how did Steve think things went? “I am pleased that our second Northern Showcase in Manchester was an outstanding success. With excellent feedback from our customers and supplier partners, we are looking forward to next year!” So are we, Steve, so are we!