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Category — Game Industry Incentives

Telefilm Announces Video Game Developer Competition Finalists

Categories: Canadian DevelopersGame Industry IncentivesStartup Game Developer Issues

Competition Rules

The Canadian federal agency, Telefilm, has announced the four finalists in round 2 of its video game developer competition. The finalists are:

The finalists were chosen at this years’ Game Developers Conference.

In the prior round, each finalist had won $50,000 to explore their proposed game, seek venture capital etc.. In this round 2, each of the four finalists received a further $250,000 to develop a prototype of their game. In September a winner will be chosen at Vancouver’s VidFest. The winner will receive a further $500,000 to launch their game.

In addition to the four finalists above, on January 15, 2007 the following additional $50K round 1 winnners were announced:

Good luck to all.

Sources: Gamasutra | GameCareerGuide.com | CBC.ca | PlayBack | Canada.com

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Eidos Sets Up Shop In Montreal With Help of Quebec Government

Categories: Canadian DevelopersGame Industry Incentives

Publisher/Developer Eidos Interactive, Ltd. (a division of SCi Entertainment Group PLC), most famous for its Tomb Raider and Hitman franchises, has announced plans to take advantage of Quebec’s tax and other incentives and open up a new development studio in Montreal. Details include:

  • studio to be headed by former Babel/Ubisoft exec Stéphane D’Astous
  • 110 jobs (including 70 developer positions) will be created in 2007 with 350 jobs in total to be created over 3 years
  • Montreal to pay 40% of salaries and a three year tax holiday
  • new studio to develop next-gen titles
  • studio to consist of three next-gen development teams
  • first title will be based on existing IP

Dale’s Comment: With the previous employment pilfering spats between EA and Ubisoft Montreal, one can only anticipate this sudden increase in demand for developer talent will create even more pressures between these big three Montreal developers.

Related: Gamasutra Interview with Stéphane D’Astous on new studio (Feb 19, 2007)

Sources: Gamasutra I | Gamasutra II (background info) | GameSpot | Spong | CBC.ca

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France to Provide Video Game Development Tax Credits

Categories: Game Industry Incentives

The French Parliament has approved tax credits for local producers of video games “with a cultural dimension”. The credits can finance up to 20 percent of a company’s production costs to a maximum of 3 million euros (close to $4 million U.S.) a year. Whether these credits will violate the E.U.’s subsidy prohibitions is still to be determined.

Sources: Reuters | joystiq | GamePolitics.co

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EU Investigating Whether French Video Game Developer Tax Incentives are Legal

Categories: Game Industry Incentives

The EU is investigating whether France’s proposed tax breaks for French video games industry (a tax credit worth 20 percent of the cost of the game) are designed to support “genuine cultural projects” and therefore legal under EU rules, or harm comptetition and trade between member states, and therefore offside EU rules.

Sources: Gamasutra | Middle East Times (AFP) | International Herold Tribune | Forbes (AFX) | San Jose Mercury News | Business Week | European Union Press Release

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Canada to Provide Seed Money to Winner of Video Game Developer Competition

Categories: Canadian DevelopersGame Industry IncentivesStartup Game Developer Issues

Competition Rules

Today, the Canadian federal agency, Telefilm, invited new Canadian video game developers to compete for Cdn $2M (U.S. $1.8M) in financing. The ten projects voted most likely to succeed in the “Great Canadian Video Game” competition will receive $50,000 each to further explore their proposed game, seek venture capital etc.. Two months later the field will be winnowed to 4. Each of those will receive a further $250,000 to develop a prototype. At next year’s Vancouver VidFest, a finalist will be given a further $500,000 to launch their game.

Click here to apply! Applications are due by December 15, 2006.

Dale’s Comment: I am of mixed-emotions about this. I have no problem in principle with tax incentives to favor emerging industry. But I have always argued against Canada’s ubiquitous Canadian content rules and preferential treatment for Canadian-owned businesses over foreign-owned businesses. I’m also not so sure Canada actually needs these incentives because it is disproportionately represented on the global stage by its extremely successful video game development community – Montreal’s Ubisoft, Edmonton’s BioWare, Vancouver’s EA and Radical, London’s Digital Extremes, to name just a few.

All that said, if one of these new developers requires a place to spend this money on first rate legal services – look no further! Laughing

Sources: Reuters/Hollywood Reporter | City News | ZDNet | Washington Post

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Manitoba Provides Grants to Developers

Categories: Game Industry Incentives

The Manitoba Government announced new grants to video game developers for up to 45 percent of labour costs for new video games provided 25 percent of the salaries are paid in Manitoba.
 
Sources: Manitoba News Release  |  Toronto Star  |  Winnipeg Sun  |  Manitoba’s Knowledge Enterprise Branch  |  GamePolitics.com

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Georgia Confirms Video Game Tax Incentives

Categories: Game Industry Incentives

Georgia has enacted tax code changes allowing digital entertainment producers, including video game companies based outside of the state, to gain new savings on products developed there. The incentive takes the form of a credit on Georgia income taxes. Both Georgia-based and non-Georgia-based companies with limited tax liability can transfer them to a Georgia company, as long as the transferor recoups at least $.60 on the dollar.
 
Sources: Gamasutra  |  GameCloud  |  Gameplanet  |  GamePolitics.com

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Ontario Budget Boosts Credits for Video Game Production

Categories: Game Industry Incentives

Under Thursday’s new budget, the Ontario interactive digital media tax credit available to small digital media businesses will increase to 30 per cent from the current 20 per cent, the province’s finance minister, Dwight Duncan, announced in his budget speech Thursday afternoon.

Sources: CBC  |  Globe & Mail  |  GamePolitics.com

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EA Gets Government Help To Train Quebec Employees

Categories: Canadian DevelopersGame Industry Incentives

EA is planning to spend $2.6 million to train current and future staff at its Montreal offices, with $660,000 worth of help coming directly from the Quebec government.
Source: Gamasutra

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Louisiana Digital Media Act Passed By Governor

Categories: Game Industry Incentives

The bill gives video game developers who set up shop in Louisiana a 20 percent tax credit provided they remain in operation for the long term and build working relationships with Louisiana universities.

Sources: Gamasutra | Prior June 23, 2005 Gamasutra Story

GamePolitics Full Coverage of Louisiana Violent Game Law

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Ubisoft Expands Operations With Help from Quebec Government

Categories: Canadian DevelopersGame Industry IncentivesPolice Actions

Among other incentives, Emploi-Québec is contributing $6.3 million (USD $5.3 million) in financial assistance for the first three years of Ubisoft’s expansion program, as part of Ubisoft’s accelerated job creation plan.

Sources: Gamasutra | GameIndustry.biz

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