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Brief encounter: Nicolas Vanden Abeele, senior VP entertainment at Barco

Nicolas Vanden Abeele discusses life at Barco, give his industry tips and reveals what makes him tick outside of the office

When did you first become involved with Barco?

I started working for the company in 2017. Barco is a household name in the industry, providing visualisation solutions for the entertainment, healthcare and enterprise markets.

I head up the entertainment division which has a leading position worldwide in a diverse number of markets in the cinema, venues and hospitality and simulation space.

How has Barco evolved as a company in the time since you joined?

Barco has become much more of a hardware, plus software, plus services player over the past several years, whereas it was much more a hardware-centric company before. Like many other companies, we are also in the middle of a transformation towards becoming a more services-oriented organisation where innovative business models play an extremely important role.

How has Barco’s portfolio evolved?

Barco Entertainment continues the investments in expanding its product portfolio for projection, image processing and LED.

We have enlarged our cinema projector portfolio to focus on a lowest cost of operation whilst delivering the best image quality. As such we now have a portfolio ranging from lamp based projectors to smart laser, laser phosphor, and full RGB laser projectors, and are working on the next-gen cinema experience with HDR lightsteering.

In Venues and Hospitality, we have expanded our portfolio with various additions from the 2K lumen night vision simulation projector to the world’s brightest projector at 75,000 lumen, and also including small and hi-res LED’s.

What products are currently proving the most popular at Barco?

UDX has become a game-changing projector platform for the events and ProAV markets, for us. Customers told us they want a projector that is easy to ship, easy to set up, easy to maintain, with unmatched colour performance, flexible brightness and resolution. We took this feedback to heart and the UDX has proven to be the projector of choice for some big shows such as Justin Timberlake, Indochine or Lady Gaga. The same is true for big corporate events or large sports arenas where advertisers demand the best image quality to deliver their message.

What advice would you give to businesses investing in AV?

In the entertainment business, the image on the wall is part of the experience. AV solutions are becoming increasingly important to wow audiences worldwide. The evolution of technologies like laser projection, high definition LED, image processing moves at an incredible speed. These technologies make it possible to offer compelling experiences that customers cannot recreate in their living rooms.

Outside of work, how do you like to spend your spare time?

In my spare time, I like to spend my time with my family and kids, travelling around the world to remote off-the-beaten-track locations. I am fond of running and participate regularly at triathlons.

Finally, tell us something about yourself, which might surprise people?

I am pretty much a citizen of the world… I have worked and lived quite some time in the Americas, Asia, Europe and speak fluently seven languages.