MONTREAL, Oct. 20, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - Alliance Numérique, which represents Quebec's video game studios, today presented its brief along with an economic study by SECOR-KPMG to the members of the Quebec's taxation review committee. Alliance Numérique took this opportunity to evaluate the progress made by the Quebec video game industry to date and to propose a plan that will not only sustain its current position as a global leader but will also promote further growth. This included measures for diversifying the video game industry in Quebec ensuring continued success of major studios, growth of local studios, and supporting a new generation of Quebec video game entrepreneurs.
"More than 15 years ago, Quebec took an innovative step by targeting the video game industry. We've carved out our niche with our creativity and our talent, but also by creating fertile ground for local and international developers," said Martin Carrier, president of Alliance Numérique and studio head at WB Games Montréal. He was joined by Rémi Racine, president of Behaviour, and David Lipes, president and co-founder of Budge Studios.
"The video game industry represents 10,000 direct and indirect jobs, more than 120 companies, a highly qualified labour force, economic impact of close to a billion dollars and $145 million in direct tax benefits for the government," explained Mr. Carrier. "But beyond the tax benefits, with projected 7.2% growth for the industry globally, Quebec must assert itself as a driving force in the digital economy and capture its share of this growth. Our industry is creative and innovative, and it plays a key role in breathing new life into declining neighbourhoods and partnering with teaching and research institutions. Today, it's an integral part of Quebec's brand image and serves as an outstanding calling card."
Major economic study by SECOR-KPMG
A new study done by SECOR-KPMG, has just confirmed that the videogame industry is a major economic driver and a source of wealth creation for Quebec. The study analyzes trends in the industry and the main issues it faces on a global scale. It also documents the Quebec video game industry's position, its benefits for the government, and demonstrates the importance of staying competitive in order to sustain its current positive impact on the Quebec economy.
The following are just a few video game industry highlights from the study:
- A global market that should hit $83 billion by 2016, with anticipated growth of 7.2% annually;
- Changing player demographics (age, sex, etc.) that are opening up new prospective markets;
- Changes in the value chain: access to online content, digital distribution, etc.;
- A growing number of government support measures elsewhere in Canada and abroad;
- Number of direct jobs in Quebec: 8,750 (2013), 10,000 with indirect jobs;
- Growth of video game jobs in Quebec from 2003 to 2013: 23.2%
- $827 million in economic impact and direct tax revenues of $145 million for the government versus a cost of $135 million for the CTMM.
Alliance Numérique's three recommendations for strengthening the video game industry in Quebec
Alliance Numérique recommends restoring the tax credit for multimedia productions (CTMM) to 37.5% in order to continue to attract international leaders and preserve the growth and the vitality of the large studios, operating in Quebec. "Large studios play a special role in the video game ecosystem. They are a significant source of job creation, train and hire young skilled workers out of university, and are drivers of cutting-edge technologies. The CTMM fosters innovation which results in the release of high profile video game products, the creation of numerous jobs, investment in and visibility for the province."
Alliance Numérique also recommends adjusting the CTMM so it can contribute to the growth and acceleration of established smaller local studios. "These companies run by local entrepreneurs, enrich and energize the Quebec video game industry. If the eligibility rules for the CTMM are adjusted based on Alliance Numérique's recommendations, these studios will be better equipped to achieve their full potential both in terms of hiring local talent and developing new innovative projects."
Lastly, Alliance Numérique recommends the creation of a dedicated fund to support the creation of new local start ups and the development of intellectual property in Quebec. The video game sector will be even more robust with the addition of more new studios that can adapt quicker to new market opportunities than their larger counterparts. This fund would also encourage the growth of Quebec-owned studios through new intellectual property designed and developed right here."
Maintaining the Quebec miracle
Alliance Numérique asserts that it is important to support one of the greatest Quebec success stories in recent decades: the emergence of a brand new high impact sector of activity. In many respects, Quebec broke new ground. Today, the Quebec model has inspired other cities, provinces and countries to implement similar incentive programs for their respective video game sectors. Alliance Numérique firmly believes that Quebec is positioned to encourage even greater diversification and to promote a strong video game ecosystem. Government participation is of paramount importance and will serve as the catalyst for this evolution. Alliance Numérique also believes in a confident Quebec economy that is ready to turn challenges and obstacles into opportunity. "The past two decades have laid the groundwork for our capability to meet these challenges. It's now time to keep the Quebec miracle going," concluded Mr. Carrier.
About Alliance Numérique
Since it was founded in 2001, Alliance Numérique has served as the business network for Quebec's video game industry. Its members include developers of all sizes and in all areas of the gaming and digital entertainment sectors. Alliance Numérique also represents the industry in its dealings with the government. Its mission is to support the growth and competitiveness of its members with the objective of raising Quebec's international profile as a centre of excellence for creation, production and distribution in the digital industry.
SOURCE: Alliance Numérique
For further information: Caroline Couillard, Morin Relations Publiques, B. 514-289-8688, ext. 233, C. 514-755-5729, [email protected]