Where We're Going
the process by which different kinds of living organism are believed to have developed from earlier forms during the history of the earth.
the gradual development of something
Evolution is something that is a necessity in all areas of our lives, to grow, to adapt and to move forward.
This applies to many facets of our world, including tour and production management.
A lot of time and effort is (needlessly?) spent trying to locate a good freight company a good trucking company and a good bussing company in order to ensure that a tour goes smoothly.
EPT (European Production Transport) will take care of all of those needs giving you more time to concentrate on other areas, it is the next step/ evolution of modern day European touring.
But what is EPT?
EPT is a one stop shop for European Production taking care of all touring needs from freight to trucking to bussing, giving tour and production managers the peace of mind they need and the reassurance that one company is handling all their needs for their tour.
It is comprised of 3 of the most well-known names in the freight, trucking and bussing world.
Horizon Entertainment Cargo (freight) headed up by Phil McDonnell, Trucking Service (Trucking) headed up by Elmar and Hanno Lamberti and Coach Service (Bussing) headed up by Clemens Behle
EPT was officially formed the back end of the 90's after Horizon Entertainment Cargo through Phil McDonnell’s own past experience had already completed many one stop shop European tours for various HEC freight client relationships.
By the time EPT was formed Phil McDonnell was already an established name in the Entertainment freight and music business. After an illustrious 28 year career as a production/tour manager for artists such as Rory Gallagher, Fleetwood Mac, Van Morrison, Psychedelic Furs, Gin Blossoms, Clannad to name just a few McDonnell decided to come off the road but still wanted to stay involved in what he knew best from leaving school.
Entertainment Freight was a favoured choice as the requirements for a tour/production manager to him re. tour freight was second nature.
However, from the start, McDonnell wanted to be more than just a UK based music freight company.
His goal was to have an entire HEC family network of offices around the entertainment touring world offering a familiar HEC touring and production service to all clients everywhere they tour.
Enter the brothers Elmar and Hanno Lamberti, Chris Hahne and Clemens Behle, the minds behind Trucking Service and Coach Service.
Trucking Service was founded in 1982 by the Lamberti brothers in the Cologne, Germany. At that time, the city had a vibrant Rock n Roll scene in which the Lamberti’s were heavily involved. Before they started Trucking Service, they were tour managing full blown productions for various Rock n’ Roll bands in Europe. This experience was a major advantage for their later work to come. Already their knowledge of the music industry allowed Trucking Service to function as more than just your average transportation company. Besides guaranteeing that your equipment will be where it needs to be, when it needs to be there, Trucking Service themselves today also offers a complete service package in the production field including taking care of secured equipment storage and pre-tour production rehearsal facilities also.
In 1992 Trucking Service expanded from transporting the artist’s equipment only to transporting the artists also. Chris Hahne joined the team and so Coach Service was founded and a few years later he was joined by his business partner Clemens Behle. The idea behind Coach Service was to offer artists a premium touring experience in Busses that could not be matched by any other competitor in Europe.
In 1997, both Trucking Service and Coach Service were rapidly expanding and moved from their headquarters in Cologne to Wehnrath, a small town 30 minutes outside of Cologne. This allowed for exciting new possibilities for both production transport companies. The team grew, new garages were built in order to maintain the vehicles to excellent company standards that had been set already, more workshops were built to allow revolutionary customization of the tour busses and the overall company parking lot area was increased to roughly 15.000 m².
McDonnell knew about both the Lamberti’s, Behle and Hahne and decided to reach out to them in order to use their services for any trucking and bussing requirements that might have been needed by Horizon Entertainment Cargo for their own clients in Europe. With the offer of working alongside McDonnell on the table the Lamberti’s, Behle and Hahne decided to snap it up and start something that they knew could & eventually would develop into a powerhouse of a production company in Europe.
After working under their own respective company names, which are still operational and major leading production names in their respective fields to date, the first big joint venture came in the mid-1990s when Doug Nightwine ( tour manager for the Joe Satriani ) approached his past touring comrade and friend McDonnell for production assistance with his upcoming European tour as he was stuck on a Sth American tour with Joe with bad communications to work with. Nightwine also enquired if McDonnell could recommend a good trucking and bussing company that he could tour with and that was the moment McDonnell knew that this could be the start of something good for all HEC clients.
After this, it became apparent that the European market had a need for this type of “one stop shop” tour production service.
A service where you have a group of individuals who are all long serving experts in the entertainment industry, that will cover all areas of touring and production ensures a professional and thorough tour service is provided to all clients from start to finish.
Thus the EPT brand name to oversee the 3 x companies “One Stop Shop” production business was formed officially a few years later
Since EPT was formed the company has been growing in size and status, not just as an organisation but as individual companies too..
Horizon Entertainment Cargo celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2014 and in that time has grown into a worldwide entertainment cargo network with 10 x official HEC offices now in Europe, Nth America, Australasia, the Far East and Israel.
With offices far and wide and a client list boasting some of the biggest names in music as well as clients in theatre also Horizon Entertainment Cargo work on the mantra "there are very few places in existence on this planet that we cannot deliver to to make a show happen" and this has been evident with production clients still coming back to this very day after 20 years.
All/any details ever required for Horizon Entertainment Cargo and their services offered can be found at www.hecargoworld.com
Much like HEC, the German partners Trucking Service and Coach Service have evolved into larger ventures as well. Trucking Service’s fleet of about 45 vehicles can be found on motorways throughout all of Europe & beyond offering transportation from the farthest outposts of Russia all the way to the Canary Islands. A varied spectrum of international clients ranging from hard rock bands to prominent theatrical productions such as Cirque du Soleil all rely on the years of hard experience that Trucking Service has gathered in the field of entertainment trucking. To get a better look at the services offered by Trucking Service, visit the company website at www.truckingservice.de or to get a look at many of the pictures that show what it’s like to be on tour with Trucking Service, find the Trucking Service Facebook page at www.facebook.com/truckingservice
Coach Service is no exception to its other growing business partners. CEO Clemens Behle has been a very busy man; currently the company has about 70 high-end and customized vehicles on the road with offices in Germany, England and France. Coach Service busses are designed in a way that allows for quick and customised change to the busses interior so can cater to any of their client’s needs. When a bus comes off a tour and enters the company workshop it can be transformed in a matter of hours. Anything is possible, from 8-10-12-14-16 x berth sleepers to busses with king size Star bedrooms or with lounges equipped with flat screen TVs. The busses can be equipped with the with the highest in multimedia standards ranging from next generation gaming consoles to surround sound systems to colour changing LED mood lighting systems. Some of the biggest names in the music business such as Lenny Kravitz, Rihanna, Janet Jackson and Bon Jovi have all put their faith in the excellent services offered by Coach Service. To get a better look at what Coach Service has to offer, visit the company website at www.coachservice.com .
Present times and clients expectations have forced Coach Service to evolve in order to withstand the heavy competition in the European market; a new partner company called Berlin Rock Coaches was recently formed by former Coach Service CEO Chris Hahne in the music capital of Germany, Berlin. BRC is able to offer the same standards of experience and knowledge of the music business at more affordable prices to a whole new range of clients. BRC offers slightly older models of the premium Coach Service busses, offering similar quality to clients who may be running on a tighter budget. To see what BRC has in store for clients, visit the webpage at www.berlin-rock-coaches.com .
With the expansion of these 3 x companies individually, the growing of EPT was inevitable.
EPT currently is the only one stop shop call for so many major tour/production managers now when they are touring Europe.
With the far reaching contacts at the disposal of EPT your European touring is just that much easier.
So what’s next for EPT? What’s on the horizon? Well it’s just going to keep on developing, growing and evolving.
With a fresh new batch of young upcoming individuals within the EPT company framework now all hungry to feed off the experience and knowledge of McDonnell, the Lamberti’s, Behle and Hahne and to implement it into the current and also new breed of upcoming production managers too whilst still maintaining the professionalism, service and ethos that has made the individual companies what they are today all under the watchful eye of the group of men that have made this possible.
Of course they are not going anywhere anytime soon and are right there in the thick of it all as always and it is this mix of experience and youth that will ensure that EPT continues to grow at the rate it has been doing since its inception.
In a changing landscape where budget & time is critical and requirements are changing, EPT are evolving to ensure that they are ready to meet any demands of European production and touring.