Industry Leaders Form Sixty82

Innovators from three countries, with over 100 years of entertainment industry leadership between them, have come together to form Sixty82, a brand-new company which engineers and manufactures next generation trussing and staging systems.

Headquarted in Drachten, Netherlands, Sixty82 is a British, Dutch and French alliance – designed specifically to bring a fresh view onto the market. Sixty82 has a clear vision to change the way that lightweight structural systems are used, and introduces unique technology that guarantees every individual component is traceable, safe and properly engineered.

Sixty82’s CEO, Fokko Smeding, founder and former managing director of Prolyte, which he began in 1991 in Leek in The Netherlands. Smeding brings his all-round experience of having created a global leader in the sector, as well as a passionate determination to continue introducing improvements in many new areas.

Marc Hendriks is Sixty82’s Technical Director. He joined Prolyte in the early ‘90s where he was responsible for many technical ‘world firsts’. He is a prominent figure in a number of industry working groups and constantly dedicated to the development and innovation of safe aluminium structures. Marc brings with him a world-class knowledge of systems, processes and techniques, combined with an incisive eye for improving products and solutions.

Adrian Brooks founded Astralite, widely credited as the world’s first aluminium modular trussing system, in 1981. Since then Brooks has been a serial entrepreneur and investor in a number of ground breaking concepts including Live Track and Digital Track trussing systems, the unique arena rehearsal facility LS-Live Studio 001, and Backstage Academy – the worlds first dedicated Live Event University Centre. He brings his broad experience to Sixty82 along with a dedication to innovation and the introduction of new concepts.

Lee Brooks trained as a mechanical engineer and was previously CEO of Prolyte. He is now CEO of Production Park and bringst to Sixty82 a combination of technical and commercial understanding of the sector, alongside a flair for business strategy and marketing.

Axente CEO Xavier Drouet founded Axente in 1993 after 12 years of professional experience in trussing rental and sales. With Axente’s primary role as the exclusive French distributor for Prolyte, Drouet successfully introduced and developed the Prolyte brand in France over 25 years, alongside other brands such as MA Lighting and Robe. In 2000 Drouet founded further brands, and companies including Ayrton, Oxo, and Le Parc De l’Evénement. He brings a combination of entrepreneurial, technical and commercial understanding, with experience of French and worldwide distribution.

Axente General Manager, Jérôme Bréhard began his industry experience with French luminaire manufacturer, Robert Juliat, before joining Axente in 1997 to develop Prolyte, MA Lighting and other brands. He rapidly rose to General Manager and partner in the group. Like Drouet, Bréhard brings a combination of technical and commercial understanding to Sixty82 along with his experience of French and worldwide distribution.

Alain-René Lantelme joined Axente in 1998 after 20 years experience in rental and integration roles. He also helped develop Prolyte and other brands sales at Axente. He is now Deputy General Manager of Axente, in charge of purchasing and is the ‘expert of the trussing industry’.

“With Sixty82, we believe we have the right team,” said Lee Brooks, “a combination of all the experience and lessons learned, with young, dynamic people to drive the future forward. We strive to develop ways of doing things better so our clients can concentrate on building incredible things.”

“With some of the trussing world’s most experienced and trusted individuals behind our product line, we are extremely excited to launch Sixty82,” concluded Sixty82 CEO, Fokko Smeding. “Our passion has always been to supply the industry with safe, well-manufactured products, and back that up with our trademark – superlative, knowledgeable customer service. We have focused on the introduction of new technology that will become an industry standard within a short amount of time, and in providing our customers with confidence and security. We can truly say that Sixty82 is ‘The New Original’.”