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Themed entertainment veterans Chuck Fawcett and Daren Ulmer announce new Medici XD company

November 16, 2021 – Medici XD (Experience Development) is the new venture of Mousetrappe founder Daren Ulmer and Animax Designs founder Chuck Fawcett. Both are already successful themed entertainment entrepreneurs whose previous businesses shared a similar customer pedigree. Today, in Orlando at the IAAPA Expo, Fawcett and Ulmer announced the structure and key management of this new attraction development company, designed to create highly immersive and believable attraction experiences.

Ulmer explains that the main impact of the Medici family, which sowed renaissance with art and culture and brought Europe out of the Dark Ages, was in how they brought together the best of the arts and science, which in turn sparked inspiration and leaps forward. in many different areas. Likewise, Medici XD intends to bring together one of the strongest multidisciplinary teams in the industry.

The Medici XD offer is a response to the changing times. Customers’ digital footprints and their technological expectations are growing daily, but the way the industry is responding to this changing landscape in the way it builds attractions today has not changed. The Medici XD team sees the need for a broader solution that brings together previously disparate specialties, so that the experience is developed in a holistic process from the start. Fawcett and Ulmer believe their multidisciplinary product line will be based on a cross collaboration that will drive inspiration and innovation.

Working with planners, designers, and venues themselves, Fawcett and Ulmer believe their offering will result in a better end product and ultimately a more efficient customer experience, compared to when separate elements of a show. or an attraction are delivered independently or assembled. This will resolve common issues such as “rough edges” that undermine the credibility of the experience, or project management level issues related to integration, scope, or communication gaps.

Fawcett and Ulmer revealed how they turn their vision into reality, explaining the five divisions or “disciplines” that Medici XD includes:

  • Media: Design and production of content, visual and audio
  • Machines: motion-based merry-go-round systems and electro-sensory devices
  • Interactive: real-time rendering (“game engine”), software and interactivity
  • Theater: Live show and human interactions
  • Labs: Research & Development group focused on innovation in all disciplines

Each division will provide design and production services directly, but together they will also provide a perfectly integrated vertically solution.

It was also announced that Nathan Jones, an established executive and themed entertainment influencer with over 20 years of experience with top ride makers, will lead the company as CEO and also lead the Machines product line.

Fawcett said: “I have had the privilege of working alongside Nathan on the TEA International Board of Directors for several years and have seen how he brings people together, develops natural and trusting relationships and is a positive force. for the change. These attributes make him a perfect choice to be our CEO. The passion for creating better customer experiences that drove him to create his own experience consulting firm eXP Maven finds a greater place within Medici XD. We share this belief in a holistic visitor experience and now have the resources to help put the customer at the center of a truly unique multisensory experience, as we believe it deserves to be.

Jones went on to explain how the company is formed through a combination of acquisitions and organic development. Its history in the manufacture of amusement rides makes it well placed to develop new and exciting concepts in-house. “It would be unfair to call these developments just flying theaters and trackless rides,” said Jones of the Machines portfolio, “because what we are aiming to build will give the client more agency than the current attractions that exist on the market today. These new machines are designed to move you in a way the human body has never felt or experienced before, and I can’t wait to reveal what we have on the drawing boards. all the components of the experiences that Medici XD will develop, the parts will line up perfectly and these driving concepts will come with immersive supports built in from the start.

At Mousetrappe, Ulmer has already created incredible racks designed to transport the guest, and racks remain a central part of Medici’s complete offering, which is why they announced today the acquisition of Mousetrappe by Medici XD . Ulmer said: “This gives Mousetrappe additional room for growth, access to new technologies and the ability to further influence the customer experience, thus broadening our view of truly immersive media. I’m excited to say that the entire team will be migrating to Medici Media and existing customers will continue to enjoy the same top quality and responsive team that they always have.

Mousetrappe’s current chairman, Eric Hungerford, will continue to lead, now as chairman of Medici Media, providing continuity for existing customers and trusted hands to expand the division’s new capabilities and bandwidth. Ulmer continued, “Eric brings serious credentials as a customer and multimedia service provider with both types of Medici customers (entertainment brands and designers), Universal, Thinkwell and The Hettema Group, to ensure that we continue with reputation for excellence and delivery. Mousetrappe has already established itself.

“It’s clear that the whole team is energized by what we’re building, but there is still a lot to tell as each of the disciplines is unveiled,” said Fawcett. at the heart of every piece we assemble, and we’re very selective in having the right team on board who share our vision. The level of talent that we will continue to seek out as we build our Medici Dynasty is first in its class and best in its class. “ Further announcements are to come with reported acquisitions in the interactive area and a key hire for the theater division, both currently under NDA.

Together, these divisions will develop entertainment experiences that take the customer deeper into imagined reality by integrating these cutting-edge technologies using physical, visual, interactive and live elements to produce a seamless multisensory experience.

IAAPA was chosen as the best venue to announce Medici XD’s comprehensive vision and initiative, as it brings together the world’s best product and service companies that cater to the attractions industry. Medici also uses the IAAPA trade fair to assess the investment, acquisition or formation of additional strategic partnerships and other specialist companies that align with their division’s goals. It is a marketplace for operators of experiences ranging from FECs to theme parks for whom

Medici’s experiential development platform offers a compelling solution in an increasingly competitive environment.

The company will operate studios in Nashville, Tennessee, for which a purpose-built $ 6 million facility is under construction that will house company offices, design and manufacturing for machinery and laboratories; and Los Angeles, California, home to Media, Interactives and Theatrical.

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Cory E. Barnes

The author Cory E. Barnes