This article about succession was initiated by Dominique Rouchon, Deputy Managing Director, Angénieux International Sales-Marketing & Communication.
Passing the mic
Amid the celebration, partying, demos and gathering at the annual Band Pro Open House 2023, there was an important announcement. Amnon Band took the stage and said, “I joined this industry in 1981. I opened Band Pro in 1984. Band Pro will be 40 years old in June. It’s been an amazing journey.
“As of next year, I’m going to relinquish my position as president of Band Pro. I’m going to remain CEO. Ushering in a new era with a new generation. My son Daniel Band will be president, leading the company into the next 40 years.
“And don’t worry, you’re not going to get rid of me that quickly. So from the bottom of my heart, to this entire Industry and everyone that is connected to it, huge thank you. I not going anywhere, I’m just going to give the mike to the next President of Band Pro.
Daniel Band stepped up and said, “Thank you so much, everyone, for being here, coming from everywhere around the world. I want to say thank you to my Dad, to the Band Pro staff for putting this event together. Thank you, Dion, for being here. It’s such an honor. I looking forward to a long journey with all of you.
Amnon and Daniel continued the discussion about succession.
Amnon: People will see a lot more of Daniel and possibly less of me. But, I’ll never stop being involved.
Jon: Daniel, what will you be doing as President?
Daniel: It’s a lot of responsibility. For the most part, I will be reaching out to our clients, discussing their needs and wants. Of course, they’re going to assume that I don’t know what’s going on so I’ll have to prove myself.
Jon: But, you’ve been doing this for some time. You started at the company a number of years ago.
Daniel: I started as a driver four years ago. Then, I was service coordinator and director of operations.
Amnon: You build a building from the ground up. You can’t come into a company and be president right away.
Jon: So many people in the business started as runners or drivers. And there are quite a few companies that are now run by the second and third generation.
Amnon: It was time to do this when I realized that I’m dealing now with second generation clients, children of my previous clients, their parents, their fathers.
Daniel: Actually, there’s a funny coincidence. He started Band Pro when he was 27, and I’ll be 27 soon, going into this 40th year of the company.
Jon: How do you see the business evolving in the coming year and the years ahead, and what will you do to do the same or to change things?
Daniel: It looks like people are becoming comfortable with more affordable equipment as long as it functions properly. I’m not quite sure if this trend is going to continue, but it’s definitely something that we’ need to be prepared for.
Jon: But, don’t you think that there will always be a high end for the top movies each year?
Amnon: For sure.
Daniel: I definitely think that high-end products will continue to be appealing, especially for their artistic value or for people who desire the best of the best.
Amnon: If I can add a little bit to the answer. Daniel will have to usher the company into a whole new era. There are major developments in the industry happening at lightning speed: AI, automation, CGI, more owner-operators.
Jon: Does that mean more e-commerce?
Daniel: Yes. Gilbert Aguilar and our team have been strengthening Band Pro’s online sales lately.
Jon: What about education and seminars?
Daniel: We’ll be doing that more often as well: tutorials on certain products and as a source of knowledge for the community and schools. We’re working more closely with music video creators and areas that we had not dipped our toes into. Ideally, we’ll have even more technical people here, more in-house camera operators, more DPs, and become a technical place that people come to for knowledge and build it that way.
Jon: Daniel, what did you study in university?
Daniel: Psychology, with a minor in communications.
Jon: Amnon, what are you going to do? I can’t picture you sitting around on the porch doing nothing.
Amnon: I may dabble in mergers and acquisitions. I’m going to travel more. Take real time off. My longest vacation has been two weeks. I want a month vacation without my cell phone.
If Daniel was not so passionate about the business and the company, then I would’ve put it up for sale at some point.
Daniel: Five years ago, he asked me, “What should I do with the company?” I was like, “Sell it. Free yourself from the stress.” Then I started working here and I was like, “Actually, wait.”
Jon: It’s good you did.
Honoring Dion Beebe, ASC, ACS
Moments before announcing plans to name Daniel as President, Amnon presented the annual guest of honor award.
Amnon said, “I would like to present this award to Dion Beebe, ASC, ACS. You will join an esteemed group of cinematographers. You inspire a lot of us.”
Dion replied, “Thank you so much. This is really a great honor and surprise too. I was not expecting this. I was definitely not expecting that over there. (Over there was a yellow cab with actors, a scene from Dion’s film COLLATERAL, directed by Michael Mann, with Tom Cruise, Jamie Foxx, a Sony F900, Thomson VIPER FilmStream Camera and Zeiss DigiPrime lenses.) Seeing that F900 strapped to the front of a cab actually gives me great anxiety. Bryan Carroll over there, it probably gives you great anxiety too. From the very early days of charging into digital age and just figuring out that process, people like Amnon and companies like Band Pro have helped people like us to find our way through that complicated world that is cinematography. I think we’ve all learned as we’ve progressed our way to this point. So, a big thank you.”
Photos by Brett Gillespie, Ben Kopetzky, Gilbert Aguilar. Click for slideshow: