British sound rental company, SSE Audio Group and California based Sound Image have announced the launch of a transatlantic joint venture.
Dubbed the UAC or United Audio Companies, the venture has been designed to enable both firms to improve the international support they can offer to their clients on both sides of the Atlantic.
The new arrangement means clients touring in Europe and the USA will benefit from a common touring infrastructure and around the clock support, so acts can work seamlessly on either side of the Atlantic.
The arrangement works because it places the full resources of a national PA company at the disposal of the touring act in the locality, whether in the States or in Europe.
“It’s not just a US Company operating via an EU satellite office or vice versa in the US” explained SSE Audio Group MD, John Penn, “It’s two full-service national PA companies with a full complement of staff, service facilities, vehicles, project managers and their long-developed support networks that are made available to the touring production - in addition to the equipment inventory and crew. It means that when a tour hits a snag, SSE in Europe or Sound Image in the States are far more likely to resolve the issue quickly.”
Each of the partnering companies has introduced common technologies so touring acts will have a simple transition when they travel between the continents. All productions will have additional local contacts assigned to assist planning and coordination and reduce down time.
Neil Diamond’s current world tour is the first to officially use UAC, although both companies have been testing the waters over the last year with acts including Linkin Park, Tame Impala, Culture Club, Pharrell Williams, Rob Zombie, Five Finger Death Punch, Maroon 5 and Billy Idol.
As part of the move towards common technologies, SSE Hire has invested in the JBL VTX system. This, together with SSE’s extensive L-Acoustics inventory, means clients can now use either system on both sides of the Atlantic.