Promosa Management Inc. is gearing up for a busy 2021, when it will become the first in Canada to use groundbreaking new technology.

A Vancouver production company is gearing up for a busy 2021, when it will become the first in Canada to use groundbreaking new technology.

Promosa Management Inc. normally runs big live events, and part of its business is using LED lighting panels to create effects for audiences. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the business shutdown and tried to pivot into other endeavours.

“In May, we proposed to the provincial government to do drive-in facilities; that got denied,” said CEO Baxter Wilson. “In June, we put a proposal to do graduations; that got denied.”

Without other work, the team had nothing to do, and the equipment was left unused.

“We had to take a hard look at our business and figure out what we can and can’t do,” Wilson said.

He partnered with a company in the U.K. called Disguise to launch “extended reality” in a studio space, making Promosa the first company in Canada to do so.

Jason Kirby is head of production at Super Bonfire, a local company that creates digital media content. He’s been working with Wilson on the new technology and explains that it creates an immersive experience, making it look like a live green screen, except the effects are made before shooting.

“Basically, we are pre-producing that content beforehand so the talent can actually be immersed in that environment and have the real light coming off the LED surface reacting to them in real time,” Kirby said.

It all requires a massive amount of processing power. Kirby says brand new servers will be arriving in the new year.

“It needs an incredibly powerful back end to be able to do those things and this really is leading-edge technology,” he said.

Wilson says having to shut down production for most of 2020 has turned out to be a blessing in disguise, giving the company the time and manpower to focus on developing this next step.

“Prior to COVID, we were running at about 150 per cent, whereby we didn’t really have the time to really bring it across the finish line,” he said.

Kirby agrees.

“It was a perfect storm of event production companies that were basically out of work, all the LED tiles couldn’t go out and then you’ve got a bunch of geniuses basically sitting around trying to figure out how to come up with solutions to do something else,” he said. “I don’t think we would be here if it weren’t for the situation of COVID.”

Promosa Management Inc. will be rolling out the new technology in the new year.

Originally Published at CTV News