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High-tech investment by EMP 3d puts property plans in the picture

15th April 2015

Hull-based business helps Birmingham regeneration scheme shine at MIPIM

A high-tech business in Hull is shaping projects ranging from new homes in the city’s Bellfield Avenue to a dramatic fresh look for Birmingham city centre as unveiled at last month’s MIPIM global property expo in Cannes. Elllis Media Productions 3d (EMP 3d) has now invested in the latest processing technology, further improving its three-dimensional modelling services for clients seeking visuals of products from jewellery to superyachts and from cool cars to the regeneration of one of the UK’s biggest cities.

EMP 3d also sells some of the software behind the company’s work and provides official training in industry-leading technologies and techniques, all from its headquarters at The Deep Business Centre. Managing Director Tim Ellis has now added a fully-automated render farm, enabling the company to turn detailed images of new products and architectural designs into photo-realistic quality in a fraction of the time compared with previous standard – one hour, down from 22.

Tim said: “We can work from photos of a building that is going to be replaced and use survey data to plan in a new building as though it’s part of the scenery – people can see exactly how it will look in that setting, which is perfect for planning and marketing.

“We show all types of products in photo-realistic form, as real as you can get without actually building them. Most of our work is around property but we also create digital cars, super-yachts, jewellery and other product designs.”

Birmingham’s Southern Gateway project was one of the big stories at MIPIM, which attracted more than 21,000 people to explore the latest ideas and projects from the property industry worldwide. Tim said: “We had a key part in designing 21 of the new buildings in the Birmingham Southern Gateway project, which is a billion-pound venture and is all about creating a massive new area for mixed leisure, retail, residential, office and cultural projects, close to the Bullring and New Street Station. However our work is also relevant to smaller projects, right down to a conservatory in a back garden.”

Clients range from BSB Architecture – another tenant at The Deep who recruited EMP 3d for the new houses for Circa Homes at Bellfield Avenue – to a growing list of international customers. Tim said: “We’re working in the United States, Brazil, China, Japan and everywhere
except the places where my bank won’t let me receive money from!

“The five-meter-long hoardings at Bellfield Avenue and our other projects from cafes to skyscrapers would not be possible without the render farm, a super-computer that clients can log into and use to produce digital images from anywhere in the world.” 

The investment is key to the growth of the business. Tim added another member of staff two years ago and expects to recruit more as the expansion continues, giving him more time to focus on the increasing demand for training. He said: “We are the only certified training centre in England for Maxwell Render software. We are also an official re-seller and the only certified centre in the world to train the trainers.

“We came to The Deep in October 2012 because it enables us to work to a high standard. It’s not just a great location to work, it’s got the connectivity which is vital to our business and it provides great support. 

“As we’ve built our business we’ve looked at other sites but everyone here is really accommodating and we know we can grow here.”

Freya Cross, Business and Corporate Manager at The Deep, said: “Hull is gaining recognition as a centre for digital excellence and innovation and the work of Ellis Media is a great example of the exciting and successful projects that are happening here.

“Our challenge is to make sure we provide the best high-tech infrastructure for all our clients, and it is encouraging to see that Tim has confidence in our support services as he works to grow his business in a highly competitive global market place.” 

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