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5 minutes with… Ryan Thomas, Solotech UK Head of Sales

Solotech introduces the talent behind its unparalleled world-renowned expertise.

Solotech UK Head of Sales Ryan Thomas reflects on his 20-year career in pro AV, what it takes to make a great company culture, and the time he spilled Tango on Missy Elliot’s shoes.

Q: Ryan, how long have you been with Solotech?

RT: I joined in august 2011 and have been here ever since.

Q: Give us a quick look into your background.

RT: I started 20 years ago and gained experience in the industry with a manufacturer. That’s where I picked up the sales bug.

Q: What’s the best thing about your job? 

RT: It is definitely the customers. They make the day and job what it is, and without them, we wouldn’t be who we are.

Q: Which projects are you proud to have worked on? 

RT: One of the things I’m most proud of is setting up the SSE Audio North office, as it was the first organic expansion of SSE in the UK and opened the company to new opportunities. The sales department has grown year after year over the last decade, and I’m pleased to be a part of it with the team.

Q: What makes Solotech a great employer?

RT: It’s got to be the culture and the teamwork. Everyone on the sales and systems integration team work together to bring our services forward to the next level.

Q: What excites you most about working in pro AV?

RT: It’s the people and the passion the industry has for what it does and what it delivers it’s infectious. I didn’t set out to work in this industry 20 years ago, but I wouldn’t want to work anywhere else.

Q: Do you have any funny stories from working for Solotech?

RT: I dropped a bottle of Tango on Missy Elliot’s shoes once.

New Solotech location in Nashville

Solotech goes big in Nashville

Nashville, TN, May 17, 2022 – Earmarking the extraordinary growth that Solotech has experienced in recent years, the company has announced the opening of its massive new facility in Nashville, Tennessee.

Covering more than 120,000 square feet of space, Solotech’s new Nashville facility is a powerful picture of what the company has become, and a clear indication of where it’s headed. The global leader in AV and entertainment technology has been expanding, not only in its long-time role as a powerhouse in live production, but also as a Top 10 AV system integrator in North America across the Corporate, Worship, and Transportation sectors.

Recent notable projects in the region include the expansion of Nashville International Airport, as well as new sound, lighting, and video in several of the city’s iconic Broadway honky tonks, several major corporate headquarters, and a number of large houses of worship. And of course, Solotech continues to be a major player in the touring circuit, including current sojourns with Kenny Chesney and Carrie Underwood.

The new Nashville facility is stocked with more gear than ever, offering a comprehensive array of brands and technologies to suit virtually every demand and rider. In addition, the building offers on-site rehearsal facilities and full stage setup, providing artists and production crew the opportunity to test out touring systems under real-world conditions. Solotech’s new facility also offers a new, state-of-the-art Pre-Production Visual Mapping, enabling clients to visually design and stage their new setup or facility. And the Nashville digs also house a complete fabrication department, making it easier than ever to fill all aspects of designing and creating systems for their ever-growing range of clients and projects.

As Lee Moro, Solotech’s VP of Operations, Live Productions, observes, versatility and a comprehensive offering are some of the company’s strengths. “We can be working on the Airport, and then go out on Tour with Michael Bublé. That shows the diversity of the company. That’s what we’re all about.”

Michael Casey, Solotech Business Development Representative, agrees. “On the integration side, we have the ability to build our projects in our own shop. On the live side, we can bring artists into the shop and have their rehearsals here, in our spaces, with the equipment they’re going to have out on tour.”

“We’re always pushing the limits,” Moro concludes, pointing to the Solotech team as an indispensable part of the company’s success. “If you ask people to go above and beyond, the only way they’re going to do that is if they’re happy. You have to like where you’re working. I think we’ve created something pretty special here with an incredible team of passionate and seasoned professionals. Moreover, if you want to be part of the big Solotech family, now is the time, we’re currently looking to expand our pool of talents!”

Take a quick tour of the brand-new Solotech office in Nashville: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdFMGPr6uNg

About Solotech

Founded over 45 years ago, Solotech is a world leader in audiovisual and entertainment technology with 18 strategic locations in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and China. Thanks to an inventory encompassing over 300 renowned manufacturers, Solotech is the single source for audio, video, lighting, rigging, soft goods, control, and collaboration solutions and services. The company is internationally recognized for its expertise in Live Productions and Systems Integration in various markets, namely music, sports, business, culture, and education. Clients can also benefit from its Service Center, Online Store, and virtual technology know-how. Solotech is fully supported by three major shareholders: Claridge, Desjardins Capital and Investissement Québec. The company employs 1,360 professionals in its offices located in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Nashville, Miami, Orlando, Pensacola, London, Birmingham, Manchester, Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, Saguenay, Halifax, Macau, and Hong Kon.

Find out more at www.solotech.com

Contact
Elizabeth Mclead
Director, Marketing and Communications
elizabeth.mclead@solotech.com

5 minutes with… Phil Goldsworthy, UK Head of Systems Integration

Solotech introduces the talent behind its unparalleled world-renowned expertise.

We sat down with Phil Goldsworthy, UK Head of Systems Integration, who counts over 19 years of experience working for Solotech’s UK companies. During this time, he has been involved in exciting projects in the world of festivals, theme parks, attractions, and in the house of worship market.

Q: Phil, how long have you been with Wigwam, SSE Audio, and Solotech?

PG: I started at my full-time job with Wigwam back in January of 2003, so it’s been 19 years! I was working with Wigwam for nearly nine years as part of SSE Audio and have worked for just over three years with Solotech.

Q: Give us a quick look into your background.

PG: I have always been involved in music, first when I was playing in a band at the local Church. I quickly started taking an interest in gear and what was happening behind the consoles, so I moved into setting up the PA and mixing. This began when I was studying Live Performance Technology at Derby University and started working for Wigwam during holiday breaks, and in the summer for festival work. My early years as a full-timer at Wigwam were spent prepping gigs or working on-site. After a few years, I moved into the sales department.

Q: What is the best thing about your job?

PG: My role has changed and evolved quite a bit over the 18 years, but now as a leader of a department, I love the opportunity to work with so many different talented people. I really like the Jack Welch quote: “When you were made a leader you weren’t given a crown, you were given the responsibility to bring out the best in others.” Working with my team and ensuring we all develop both individually and as a team is my favourite part.

Q: What projects have you enjoyed working on the most over the years?

PG: From a Live Productions perspective, I used to love the variety of gigs we did from working at the New Wine Festival to mixing monitors for jazz legend Herbie Hancock. The Grand in Clitheroe was a special installation project, as it was the first live music venue in Europe to have both a high-end live music venue and a recording studio linked together. York Minster was also a great cathedral project to work on due to the technology that was integrated successfully into a very important, historic building with absolute sympathy to the heritage and architecture of the space.

Q: What makes Solotech different as an employer?

PG: For me, it’s all about the culture and the working environment that is created by all the great people who work here. Many organisations will talk about culture, but very few deliberately set out to create or change one so that it is collaborative. This is where I believe Solotech is very different. It makes recruitment an exciting challenge because I am trying to find people that fit from both a cultural perspective as well as have the necessary skill sets.

Progression is at the heart of great work culture. The most important thing to remember is that we need to work at a high level and always improve from show to show and project to project. This is also when having excellent co-workers pushes you because they are always helping you further the limits of the technology by finding the best ways to create a seamless and immersive experience for the people who are using the spaces.

Work is a big part of your life, so you want to work alongside good people in a fun and friendly environment.

Q: What is the most memorable experience you have had while working here?

PG: Well, I was once following the MD to an installation in my car, when a car pulled out in from of him. I stopped, but he stopped quicker, and I ended up smashing into the back of his car… Oops! I’ve still not lived that one down!! Sorry Mick.

Solotech marks its 45th anniversary

An audiovisual expertise as spectacular as ever, and ready for the future!

Montreal, Canada, April 21, 2022 – Solotech is proud to blow out 45 candles this year! As a world leader in audiovisual and entertainment technology, it has brilliantly supported numerous well-known projects around the world since its creation: The Rolling Stones, Resorts World Las Vegas, Celine Dion, Bridgestone Arena, Taylor Swift, Burj Khalifa, Caesars Palace, Elton John, The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park, Lady Gaga, Ascot Racecourse, Paul McCartney, Montreal International Jazz Festival and Ubisoft, to name a few! Over time, the company has evolved by continuously enriching its technological services and products offering. Now recognized worldwide as a partner of choice, Solotech has proven that it can meet all audiovisual and entertainment technology needs.   

Becoming the benchmark in the industry with audacity 
Founded in 1977 by Denis Lefrançois and André Riendeau, Solotech was initially dedicated solely to audio. Then, lighting, video, audiovisual expertise and collaboration tools were added. Forty-five years later, the company has 18 locations across the planet, 1,360 employees and an overflowing project portfolio! This success is based on significant milestones, including the arrival in 2013 of three major Canadian investors solidifying its foundation, ambitious organic expansion plans, and multiple acquisitions in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. And recently, the addition of an Online store and virtual technology expertise to an already extensive offering. Solotech was agile with its growth into new, state-of-the-art facilities to better manage its operations and immense equipment inventory.  The company also expanded its clientele far beyond entertainment to include, among others, corporate, transportation, government, houses of worship, and education.

Martin Tremblay, President and CEO of Solotech: “I am thrilled by this anniversary, its shows how seasoned Solotech is in the industry. For 45 years, customer needs have inspired us to consistently deliver the best of technology and the best of ourselves. The outstanding know-how of our employees is at the heart of our success, and I am very proud of it. We look to the future with enthusiasm as we have just added virtual productions, webcasting and augmented reality to our expertise; it will allow us to support even more clients in achieving avant-garde projects.”

The professionals at Solotech continue their mission to deliver on the highest quality of standards, from boardrooms to arenas and everything in between. Their work perfectly embodies the values of the company: passion, innovation, excellence, respect, and collaboration. After more than four decades, Solotech has always remained true to its mission to develop and implement innovative AV and entertainment technology solutions to create a unique experience every time, everywhere.

What really sets Solotech apart today? Its uniqueness: no other company has such a comprehensive and diversified offering under one roof. Solotech is proud of how far it has come and, above all, is looking forward to celebrating its future milestones with its valued employees, customers and partners.

Technology for the future of business and entertainment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSMqHUvNKgY 

About Solotech
Founded 45 years ago, Solotech is a world leader in audiovisual and entertainment technology with 18 strategic locations in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and China. Thanks to an inventory encompassing over 300 renowned manufacturers, Solotech is the single source for audio, video, lighting, rigging, soft goods, control and collaboration solutions and services. The company is internationally recognized for its expertise in Live Productions and Systems Integration in various markets, namely music, sports, business, culture and education. Clients can also benefit from its Service Center, Online Store and virtual technology know-how. Solotech is fully supported by three major shareholders: Claridge, Desjardins Capital and Investissement Québec. The company employs 1,360 professionals in its offices located in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Nashville, Miami, Orlando, Pensacola, London, Birmingham, Manchester, Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, Saguenay, Halifax, Macau and Hong Kong. The company owns many brands, including SSE Audio, Wigwam, Capital Sound, BCS Audio, Pro Sound & Video, SEAL, Miami StageCraft, Morris Light and Sound, PSSL, CBCI, in addition to its partners Waveform and XR Studios.

Find out more at www.solotech.com 

Contact
Héloïse Meunier
Corporate Communications Advisor
media@solotech.com 

Bryce Jewell Talks to TPi Magazine

Solotech UK’s new MD sat down with TPI magazine to discuss the challenges of his new role and his vision for the future.

Where were you prior to joining Solotech?
“I spent the past two decades in various roles in the IT and telecom sector. Most recently, I oversaw the US and UK enterprise businesses at Global Cloud Xchange, who own and operate one of the largest subsea networks, but I have always shared an interest in professional audio, and of course, music.”

What was it that intrigued you about the role?
“Solotech has a great team in the UK and North America, and a clear vision. The knowledge, heritage, and experience of the people at Solotech is remarkable. Our teams have a passion for this industry and can bring our client’s dreams into reality. For them, this isn’t simply a job, it’s a lifestyle.

“We are proud to be world renowned for our audio expertise and honoured that the practices we have developed have become industry standards.

“In North America, we are known as leaders in lighting and video technology in the entertainment market. We are building on our legacy of audio expertise, which remains our core market, while adding lighting and video capabilities to offer 360 opportunities to existing clients and new markets. We have some huge projects underway that include audio, lighting, and video.

“Solotech is a diversified business that delivers premier audio-visual solutions to arenas, houses of worship and corporate markets through our systems integration teams. Likewise, the area that will be very exciting to see play out over the next few years is the work we are doing with our MET (Media and Entertainment Technology) Division, following the acquisition of XR Studios.”

How is 2022 shaping up for the UK operation?
“The demand we have seen from our live productions clients is extremely encouraging, and we have launched a large recruitment drive to enable us to deliver our impressive order book. Being part of a large group enables us to leverage our resources and assets to support that demand.

“It is great to see this sector really come back to life, and we are here to support it in any way we can, as business partners and fans. I see further consolidation in the UK entertainment market. We are in a great position with the resources and skills to supply the UK’s top festivals, tours, and events with the technology needed to create amazing experiences for the audience. These investments have advanced our industry and the things we can do.”

What steps are being taken to integrate the brands in the group?
“Solotech has acquired over 10 brands. Integration is something that we have become good at. We have offices all over the globe in 18 strategic locations, but we work as one company. We have landed in the video and lighting world in a big way and will continue to build on this success, while continuing to invest in our audio business and the support we offer our clients.

“The demand is there, and we are ready for any challenge.”

You think you know Solotech? Think again!

The past year has been a source of renewal for Solotech. In addition to making four acquisitions, the global leader in audiovisual and entertainment technology diversified and expanded its service offering by adding new technologies and solutions.

The year 2022 is very promising for Solotech with the return of Live Productions activities and the continued growth of its Sales and Systems Integration and Media and Entertainment Technology Divisions.

Discover Solotech’s rich services and solutions offering, provided, as always, with the same passion at the heart of Solotech’s success for now over 45 years.

See the video here:

 

New Appointments for Solotech’s UK Leadership Team

Ryan Thomas and Phil Goldsworthy take on UK Sales and Systems Integration leadership.

Solotech has announced two significant appointments to its UK management team. Ryan Thomas and Phil Goldsworthy have taken over UK Sales and Systems Integration leadership for SSE Audio, Wigwam Acoustics, Capital Sound and BCS Audio.

The new roles will see Ryan and Phil report to Solotech UK MD Bryce Jewell,working in close collaboration with Solotech Live Productions leaders as well as overseeing corporate functions. They take over after the departure of Alex Penn, who served as Sales and Systems Integration Managing Director at SSE Audio before leaving to pursue other professional interests.

Phil brings over 17 years of experience at Wigwam Acoustics and two years as the UK Group’s Systems Integration Manager to his new role as Head of Systems Integration. His extensive experience, versatility and deep knowledge of the business will guarantee success for the Division, which is seen as one of the major growth areas for the company.

Ryan will serve as Head of Sales for Solotech’s UK companies. With over 20 years of experience in various pro audio sales functions, he will continue the success he brought to his previous role as SSE Group Sales Manager. Ryan will drive the growth of the Division and ensure it remains one of UK’s leading sales centres for world-class AV equipment.

Bryce Jewell commented: “Ryan and Phil bring experience and enthusiasm to these critical new roles in our UK sales and integration business. They have both been instrumental in helping us maintain our position as the UK’s leading supplier of AV technology. We are in a great position with Ryan and Phil as leaders of talented and crucial teams that contribute to our continued growth in the UK market.”

Bryce Jewell nommé directeur général Royaume-Uni appointed Managing Director UK

Bryce Jewell appointed Managing Director, UK

A major milestone towards a European expansion and diversification of activities

 

London, December 20, 2021 – Martin Tremblay, President and CEO of Group Solotech, is proud to announce the appointment of Bryce Jewell as Managing Director UK, as of December 15, 2021. Mr Jewell will be responsible for driving the overall business strategy for Solotech in the United Kingdom, both for the Live Productions and the Sales and Systems Integration Divisions.

“This appointment is the symbol of a new major milestone for Solotech’s expansion in the UK and Europe, and a true testimonial of our intention to continue investing in our people, our technology, our operational structure and our brand”, says Tremblay. “We are in it for the long run, and are definitely looking to build a strong, UK-based operation with–in addition to the audio heritage from SSE Audio, Wigwam Acoustics, Capital Sound and BCS Audio–other key services and technology that set Solotech apart and make it absolutely unique on the global market”, he adds.

He is a seasoned business leader with over 20 years of experience within the technology sector spanning the UK, US, Norway, and Australia. Previously, Mr Jewell successfully led the turnaround of the UK and US Enterprise businesses as Managing Director at Global Cloud Xchange who operates the world’s largest privately-owned subsea cable system. Prior to Global Cloud Xchange, he served as Director, Sales Europe at Pacnet, where he achieved President’s Club honours in his first year and continued to excel for 4 consecutive years. His broad experience in engineering, sourcing, product, sales, and management has set him apart in being able to articulate business strategies into concrete action plans that lead to revenue growth and client success and retention.

Supported by a strong, experienced, and passionate UK-based leadership Team in both Divisions, and corporate services (finance, HR, marketing, etc.), Bryce Jewell will pursue the amazing growth journey of Solotech UK and its UK Companies for the years to come. “We are absolutely thrilled and proud to welcome Bryce as part of our Leadership Team. His knowledge of business management and technology background will be a major game changer for the diversification of our business activities in the UK and in all of Europe for the years to come,” concludes Tremblay.

 

 

About Solotech

Founded over 40 years ago, Solotech is a world leader in audiovisual and entertainment technology with 18 strategic locations in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and China. Thanks to an inventory encompassing over 300 renowned manufacturers, Solotech is the single source for audio, video, lighting, rigging, soft goods, control and collaboration solutions and services. The company is internationally recognized for its expertise in Live Productions and Systems Integration in various markets, namely music, sports, business, culture and education. Clients can also benefit from its Service Center, Online Store and virtual technology know-how. Solotech is fully supported by three major shareholders: Claridge, Desjardins Capital and Investissement Québec. The company employs 1,360 professionals in its offices located in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Nashville, Miami, Orlando, Pensacola, London, Birmingham, Manchester, Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, Saguenay, Halifax, Macau and Hong Kong.

Find out more at: solotech.com

 

Contact – Solotech PR (Canada)

Heloise Meunier, Corporate Communications Advisor

media@solotech.com

 

Contact – Solotech PR (UK)

Andrew Low, Director of Marketing and Communications, UK

andrew.low@solotech.com

 

For further information about Solotech in the UK

https://www.solotech.com/united-kingdom

www.sseaudio.com

www.wigwam.co.uk

www.capital-sound.co.uk

www.bcsaudio.com

Solotech breaks into the top 10 of SCN’s top 50 systems integrators list

Solotech ranks 9th on Systems Contractor News Top 50 most important AV systems integrators on the market. 

Montreal, Canada, November 30, 2021 – After another uncommon year, Solotech is proud to maintain its ninth position in Systems Contractor News’ Top 50 systems integrators 

At the same time, Solotech confirms its place as Canada’s prime integrator, being the only Canadian company to make it on to the list. The acquisition of CBCI, a Solotech company, in May 2021, has further strengthened Solotech’s expertise in systems integration from coast to coast.  

‘’This recognition is the result of the hard work of our team of experts’’, said Philip Giffard, Global President, Sales & Systems Integration Division. ‘’We have kept our place of choice in the market thanks to our strategic approach based on diversification and a wider geographic footprint. Our employees’ innovation and passion remain at the heart of our success, despite the many challenges they had to overcome. I am very proud of them.’’  

For the second year in a row, SCN’s ranking, a great recognition in the AV industry, is based on the annual average revenue from 2019 to 2021 rather than the previous year’s revenue. Thus, SCN wishes to celebrate the success of companies that met the new challenges brought about by the pandemic. 

 

Contact

Roch Carignan
Communications and Marketing Advisor
media@solotech.com

Solotech awarded SCN’s 2021 Install of the Year

A first Systems Contractor News award for the company, honoring its work at The Rady Shell 

 

Las Vegas, United States, November 9, 2021  Solotech’s Sales and Systems Integration Division is proud to add a prestigious industry recognition to its resume for its work at The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park, home of the San Diego Symphony. 

This is Solotech’s first recognition at SCN’s “Install of the Year” Award, which celebrates companies that have gone above and beyond to create ultimate user experiences.  

Solotech rose to this major challenge by designing an exceptional sound quality and precise sound system, flexible enough for different types of performances, as well as capable of reaching 9,000 spectators while respecting the surrounding city of San Diego’s strict noise ordinance.  

A complete custom white L-Acoustics audio system was deployed at The Rady Shell, along with Meyer Sound Constellation system, DiGiCo consoles, Shure wireless microphone system, Planar LED screens, Sony and Panasonic cameras, Blackmagic video switchers, and a complete ETC lighting control system.  

Back in 2015, Pro Sound & Video, a Solotech company, was also among the winners of SCN’s Install of the year for its work at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena, in Greenville, South Carolina.  

See our work at The Rady Shell here. 

 

Contact

Roch Carignan
Communications and Marketing Advisor
media@solotech.com

CBCI Recognized as Poly Partner of the Year

CBCI Telecom, a Solotech Company, was awarded the 2020 Canada Silver|Poly Partner of the Year. This annual award from Poly, a world-class provider of collaboration and communication tools for the modern workspace, is presented to partners who demonstrated exceptional achievements and partnership.

Poly recognized CBCI’s innovation, drive, and adaptability during this unique time, as well as the importance of their partnership and how they moved forward toward growth. Congratulations to the team of CBCI for their partnership, dedication, and achievement.

Learn more about the Poly Partner Program.

 

Contact

Héloïse Meunier

Advisor, Corporate Communications

media@solotech.com

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Solotech’s wins at the OCTAS contest

Each year, the Réseau Action TI rewards technological innovation in Quebec through the OCTAS contest. It’s a unique opportunity to highlight excellence in information technology (IT) and digital technology.

At the 34th edition of this prestigious contest, Solotech won an award with its Service+ project in the Business Solutions category.

Service+ is a solution that ensures the optimal performance of audiovisual equipment. It allows for real-time monitoring and remote resolution of technical failures that may occur on any equipment.

Learn more about Service+.

 

Contact

Héloïse Meunier

Advisor, Corporate Communications

media@solotech.com

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