Gearhouse SA wins Ports and Harbour Conference
This is the first time in the IAPH's 46-year history that this prestigious biennial Maritime conference was held on African soil. More than 14 countries confirmed their participation in the conference, which was held from 24 - 30 May at the International Conference Centre (ICC) in Durban. The theme was: 'Ports - The Catalytic Impact: Uniting World Economies through Ports and Harbours', the conference aims to facilitate discussion and debate among the world's port community.
Belinda Loockx, branch manager of Gearhouse SA Durban branch, says she and her team were "incredibly excited" at being involved in such a momentous event. "It was a great challenge to be involved because it's a very wide-ranging event and we were looking forward to the opportunity to showcase the range of events that Gearhouse SA can handle."
The company supplied all the audio-visual equipment and technicians required for the event. The opening and closing ceremonies saw the company also supply lighting, sound and staging equipment, working in conjunction with Themi Venturis Productions on those elements of the conference. At the opening ceremony at the ICC on 25 May, Gearhouse SA provided a 16m by 4m screen on which a panoramic view of the Durban harbour was projected, text and video was also projected onto the screen. There was also a 'confidence' screen for the actors appearing in the opening ceremony enabling them to keep perfect timing. Richard Belia acted as project manager for all the events taking place at the ICC for the duration of the conference.
Other events also felt the input of Gearhouse SA. There were social events every night, at different venues - including a welcome at Mitchell's Park in Durban on 24 May and a traditional evening at the Botanic Gardens in the city on 27 May. The company supplied light, sound and staging at all these events.
Kwashugela Conference Centre in Mount Edgecombe was the venue for the conference's closing event and alongside the lights, sound and staging, The company supplied a water audio visual screen as well as several plasma screens. Throughout the conference the branch also supplied cameras and operators to film the action for the National Port's Authority.
"It was a challenge but one we are more than ready to meet," Loockx says. "We got great support in terms of equipment and people both from Johannesburg and Cape Town, helping to meet the hectic schedules and deadlines."