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DVD plant opens in Auckland

News release
October 15, 2003

DVD plant opens in Auckland

New Zealand’s first and only digital video disc (DVD) manufacturing plant officially opens today (Wednesday 15, October) in Auckland.

Stebbing Recording Studio in Ponsonby has invested close to $20 million and seven years bringing the CD and DVD manufacturing facility to fruition.

The plant is fully integrated with facilities for authoring digital material, master disc manufacture, reproduction of DVDs and printing and packaging.

DVDs are in increasing demand in New Zealand for their high quality digital reproduction not only from movie fans but also from a wide spectrum of businesses including the advertising, real estate and tourism industries.

Stebbing general manager Vaughan Stebbing says the facility utilises the very latest of world technologies to produce the highest quality DVDs.

“With this plant, DVD customers now get faster turnaround and more convenience,” Mr Stebbing says. “For example, movie companies no longer need to import already pressed discs. All they need to bring in is the master and we can press from that.

“On the local front, DVD production turnaround is much faster because now there’s no need to manufacture offshore. An entire production can now be made in New Zealand from scripting, music and filming through to the pressing of the DVD.”

Seven years ago Stebbing Recording Studio decided to invest in digital technology.

“This entire plant stems from a decision we made in 1996 to get to grips with the digital revolution. It was plain to us that CD and DVD were growing in popularity and the price of the hardware was going to drop as the format gained a bigger foothold.

“Now DVD machines cost about the same as VHS video tape recorders but the digital quality delivers so much more in terms of sound and picture quality,” Mr Stebbing says.

The Australian market represents about 80 per cent of Stebbing’s digital production business and about 50 million DVDs are sold there every year. The New Zealand DVD market hovers at around five million units a year.

The plant has been progressively commissioned. The CD manufacturing facility began production in 1999 and Stebbing has been gradually increasing DVD production since after commissioning its first Alpha line in 2002.

“The DVD side is now fully operational and last month we were able to increase production two-and-a-half times. It’s going extremely well.”

CDs and DVDs are pressed – in the same way vinyl records are produced – and, at top speed, the new plant is capable of producing a disc every 1.75 seconds on each of its two disc production lines.

That means Stebbing Recording Studio can pump out 40,000 DVDs and 40,000 CDs every day!

Vaughan Stebbing says delivery speed can vary from several days for normal service to less than a day for urgent jobs.

The equipment for the plant is made in Sweden by Alpha Sverige, a subsidiary of Grimaldi Industri Group which employs 1,700 people turns over US$300 million a year.

Stebbing’s connections with Alpha date back to the earliest days in 1946 when founder Eldreed Stebbing sourced pressing equipment for his record plant making 78s of local artists.

Grimaldi Industri principal Salvatore Grimaldi is in New Zealand for the official opening of the Stebbing DVD plant.

About Stebbing Recording Studio

Stebbing Recording Centre Ltd remains a private, family-owned and operated business. Stebbing was founded in 1946 by Eldred Stebbing as a recording studio and record distribution business.

A record pressing plant was commissioned in 1950 and by the 1960s Stebbing Recording was turning out chart-topping music hits. A new studio was built in 1970 and the operation was extended in 1980 to incorporate an audio cassette duplication plant and two additional recording studios. Australasia’s first digital high speed audio tape duplication system was installed in 1990.

The business became more diversified in 1995 with the addition of video duplication facilities.

Further expansion took place in 1999 with the addition of the new custom designed building to house the CD replication in March of that year

ends

Issued for Stebbing Recording Studio by Pead PR

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