AV1 sets up new HQ; invests heavily in inventory and recruitment

Wootton: AV1 will never stop investing in new technology

Australian audiovisual production company AV1 has invested A$1 million (US$912,740) in equipment upgrades, as well as moved to a 1,287m2 premise at 64 Burrows Road in Alexandria, Sydney.

The new AV1 headquarters is a reflection of the company’s investments in three key areas – inventory, operations, and recruitment of staff.

Wootton: AV1 will never stop investing in new technology

The larger facility has a dedicated space for set up and rehearsal of live events, training capabilities, studios for content production and remote recordings, increased inventory storage for operational efficiencies, including pre-loading vehicles.

AV1 has also beefed up its inventory – there were over 15,000 products in its inventory at last count – with the latest equipment including Barco vision switching systems, Sony cameras and advanced wireless communications systems, along with the replenishment of digital audio equipment and lighting.

“We will never stop investing in new technology, as we return to live events to continue our post-lockdown growth phase. Even throughout the pandemic, we invested in new cameras, lighting and studio broadcast equipment,” shared Keith Wootton, managing director, AV1.

Such efforts will go into keeping the events AV1 produces “fresh and innovative”. In fact, AV1 was one of the few events companies that set up one of Sydney’s first webcasting studios within a week of the pandemic’s beginning.

The Australian company went on to establish a studio on level six of the Museum of Contemporary Art that provided a stunning backdrop of the Opera House and Sydney Harbour, which Wootton called a “gamechanger” during the days of video conferencing.

Although there is still a place for hybrid and virtual events, these make up a “very small part” of AV1’s business now. However, the option still exists, as “organisers have seen the advantage of being able to broadcast out to a wider audience, and want to have this option”.

Addressing the current workforce shortages, AV1 also welcomes new permanent positions and an 18-month training programme to level up existing staff and attract new team members.

Wootton lamented: “Unfortunately, many skilled staff left our industry during the pandemic. We have been recruiting to deal with the demand for live events, as well as in complementary services such as video production.

There is still a place for hybrid and virtual events, although live events have returned in full force

“Previously, our industry relied heavily on a casual technical workforce, we are now recruiting more full-time technical staff to offer more job security and keep a bench of skilled technicians on hand for short lead time events.”

These are the main reasons why the new facility also has a dedicated training space to allow rapid upskilling.

Regardless, AV1 is striding into 2023 with optimism, and is pushing forward to show that it is possible to succeed and prosper as an industry.

“It’s vital that we do so in order to attract the next generation of event organisers and the next generation of staff. This is a great industry and we are determined to leave a positive mark on it,” concluded Wootton.

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