Canadian Developers Receive Multi-Million Dollar Boost

Following significant activity within the Scottish government at Holyrood and the UK government in Westminster, regarding the issue of tax breaks for game developers, new has emerged that the Canadian government has made a multi-million dollar investment to the country’s development community.

According to Develop: The Canada Media Fund this month granted CA$12.9 million (£8m) to twenty-seven tech companies – twelve of which are game developers.

Given the current UK government’s commitment to cuts and their disinterest in following through the previous administration’s acceptance of the need for tax breaks, it seems unlikely that the current round of lobbying and enquiries will result in anything approaching this level of support.

Develop:

…the Canada Media Fund – which still has CA$10.8 million (£6.6) to spend in its second funds round – is also backing startups and providing assistance in game promotion and advertising.

Over CA$1.5 is being spent on eleven new projects – from games to apps – while CA$1.6 million is set aside for marketing

The princely financial support underlines how central the game industry is considered to Canada’s digital economy. The nation is widely considered to have set a global template for supporting its development studios – a model which the UK is despairingly at odds with.Canada offers game development tax breaks in three regions, saving as much as 40 per cent on production costs. And while there is additional support from the state, there is even further in individual regions.

Ontario’s Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, for example, recently unveiled a CA$1.15 billion fund to encourage developers in the region to create more jobs.

Some 250 companies applied for the Canada Media Fund. Due to popularity, the deadline for the second round has been extended to November 12, 2010.

5 thoughts on “Canadian Developers Receive Multi-Million Dollar Boost

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  1. Here’s a thing. According to Channel 4’s 2009 annual report, they invested £3m (CA$4.8m) just through 4iP in digital media, which stimulated another £2m (CA$3.2m) in co-investment. That doesn’t include the education budget, which at a guess is around a further £5m (CA$8m) per annum and is spent *entirely* on digital media.

    And that’s before you take into account vehicles such as NESTA, ScreenWM, Creative Scotland and the Arts Council. And I heard the BBC made a Dr Who game recently.

    Just saying.

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    1. We’re not disputing that there are different funds and budgets available, Dave. However, finding out about all of the various bodies and funding channels is on a par with getting the babel fish out of the dispenser in the HHGTTG game.

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      1. It could certainly all do with being ‘streamlined’, no doubt, but I don’t see that happening any time soon. My main gripe is with those who claim that somehow there isn’t support for the sector when there quite blatantly is.

        On another note, I’d like to revisit the 12 Canadian games projects in a year’s time and see how they’re faring.

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