The UK Cinema Association has welcomed today’s announcement by cinema service company CinemaNext that the UK Digital Funding Partnership (DFP) – the grouping of smaller operators established by Association in 2010 to support the digitisation of smaller cinema operators –  has now fully recouped on its VPF funding.

As noted in the Press Release here – the DFP facilitated the digitisation of around 300 screens across 120 smaller cinema operators, in a venture which was (not least in not involving any significant public funding) unique anywhere in the World.

Recoupment means that those sites are now free of any Virtual Print Fee (VPF) requirements.

Welcoming the news, UK Cinema Association Chief Executive Phil Clapp commented:

“The UK cinema industry as a whole should be hugely proud of the success of the UK Digital Funding Partnership. We would not have reached this point without support from a wide range of partners. That includes the major cinema circuits, who helped fund the Partnership’s establishment, those smaller operators who put their faith in the model and colleagues in film distribution whose financial contributions made this all achievable. And in CinemaNext of course we could not have picked a more supportive partner.”

Jerry Murdoch, Country Manager for CinemaNext UK & Ireland added:

“By any measure, the DFP has proven to be successful, enabling a significant number of smaller cinema operators to make the transition from 35mm to the new digital projector technology, and helping to ensure that no sites were ‘lost’ during the process.

All equipment supplied by dcinex under the DFP carries a 10-year parts manufacturer’s warranty, with the exception of any equipment previously owned by the cinema and which was purchased by dcinex from the exhibitor and rolled into the DFP. Even though the contract has now ended, the warranty conditions remain, and DFP members continue to have the comfort of knowing that spare parts will be supplied free of charge. They will, however, need to have a manufacturer agreed support contract in place to ensure that spare parts are provided under their warranty.”