The future of CRMX and W-DMX - what lies ahead? A Q&A session with Alexander Hellstrom, CEO
Since the acquisition of Wireless Solution back in March 2020, LumenRadio and Wireless Solution have the same owner, the same CEO and even share some engineering expertise. Together, the two companies form a heavy-weight player within the wireless DMX market. But what is the plan for the two companies and how will this affect you as a CRMX or W-DMX user?
What lies ahead in LumenRadio’s and Wireless Solution’s respective roadmap? We caught up with Alexander Hellstrom, CEO at Wireless Solution and LumenRadio, to get some more insights:
Q: Some people might have been surprised about LumenRadio acquiring Wireless Solution – can you share some insights into the decision from LumenRadio to acquire Wireless Solution?
A: The love for wireless technology is strong among the people behind LumenRadio and Wireless Solution. Both companies have over the years contributed in transforming the lighting industry and have great experience and expertise within wireless communication and engineering. Since the two companies have complementary products and solutions, a geographically diverse and, to a large extent, non-overlapping customer base the decision to join forces makes a lot of sense.
Q: It’s been almost 9 months since LumenRadio acquired Wireless Solution – what has this time been like so far?
A: Given the current COVID situation, which really took a turn for the worse right after the acquisition was complete, it has of course been a very challenging time, not just for us but for the whole entertainment industry as a whole. With almost all live events cancelled or postponed, many of our customers have suffered greatly and, as a result, so have we. Recently, however, we have seen some positive signals from the Film & Broadcasting industry where things are slowly improving with more films and TV-shows being done. Another area we see improving is within architectural lighting where demand for our type of solutions actually has increased compared to pre-COVID.
Q: Looking at the two brands, CRMX and W-DMX – will they continue being offered also in the future?
A: I see a future where both Wireless Solution and LumenRadio continue to offer their W-DMX and CRMX products separately and where each brand will maintain their own market identity, serving different market segments. The products will be sold using separate sales forces and the two brands will also continue to have their separate distribution networks around the world. We will continue to invest in this market, building on each brands’ strengths and to make wireless DMX even more accessible and attractive going forward by offering new solutions and products
Q: With Wireless Solution now owned by LumenRadio, will the market see some sort of compatibility between the two technologies?
A: During this first period since the acquisition we have mainly focused on the end-user products of each brand, looking at how we best position the two brands in the market and what product areas needed to be changed or improved. During this process, we have also thought about what compatibility between the two brands could look like and I’m happy to announce that, as customers will see very soon, we are already taking the first steps towards compatibility with the upcoming release of a new generation W-DMX end-user product that will feature full CRMX compatibility as an option.
We will continue the compatibility work between the two brands where LumenRadio and the CRMX products will, for example, introduce official support for W-DMX products in the beginning of 2021.
Q: So there will be compatibility on the end-user product side – but what about compatibility on the OEM side?
A: As for potential compatibility on the OEM side, looking at how the two brands and technology platforms will possibly align there, this is a discussion we are starting to have now – here we will also include some of our biggest OEM partners to get their input. I expect to have more information to share later in 2021.
Q: If you look into your crystal ball, what do you see happening in our market in 2021?
A: Unfortunately I think we have another difficult year ahead of us, especially on the live event side where I don’t expect any major improvements until there is a vaccine available which will allow people to gather safely in large numbers again. On the Film & Broadcasting side I do expect a small recovery given the precautions and safety measures this industry has taken and implemented – how big the recovery will be is hard to say and I think it will be a matter of touch-and-go depending on how the pandemic continues to evolve.
Internally within the two companies, we will use this ‘downtime’ to continue developing our product offering with the goal to do multiple product releases and upgrades over the next 12 to 24 months.
Q: Any final message you want to give to our customers?
2020 has been a crazy year, but the tide will change. We look forward to a future where our industry and customers will start thriving again but before that there is a holiday coming up and I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.