Scottish digital media companies encouraged to innovate and grow with Interactive Scotland

SCOTTISH ENTERPRISE NEWS RELEASE

Tuesday 16 February 2010

Interactive Scotland, a new service from Scottish Enterprise designed to stimulate growth and innovation in Scotland’s digital media sector, launches today. Scottish digital media companies now have access to a unique support network, helping them develop new business models and innovative content, applications, products and services.

Interactive Scotland also encourages companies to work together and share ideas through building active communities and collaborative networks. Developing skills within the industry is also part of the service, keeping companies informed of the opportunities that exist on new technology platforms, in the UK and internationally, and helping them find untapped markets overseas and secure fresh sources of investment.

Scottish companies working in design/advertising, mobile, interactive software, internet, gaming, broadcast services, film, video production, exhibition services, next generation learning, music and publishing can benefit from the Interactive Scotland service, offering access to market intelligence and research; product and technology support; sector-specific business development; and partner connections.

Terry Hurley, director of Digital Markets and Enabling Technologies at Scottish Enterprise, commented,“I’d encourage companies to make contact with Interactive Scotland if they have an ambition to grow their business. Technology is radically changing the market for digital media content in an unprecedented manner, with Scotland well placed to exploit these opportunities. The proliferation of new technology devices has created exciting opportunities for new content and software services that can be accessed through new delivery channels.

“Smaller businesses are often at the forefront in developing innovative content, but don’t necessarily have relationships with the larger companies and consumers hungry for this new content. We want to ensure that our companies are able to exploit these opportunities and maintain Scotland’s reputation for rapid, commercially successful innovation in global digital media markets.”

One of the Scottish businesses already working with Interactive Scotland is Kiltr, a next-generation niche business social networking platform operating in the same Professional Networking (PNS) space as LinkedIn. Targeted at professionals, entrepreneurs, companies, organisations and associations who are Scottish, or have an affinity for Scotland, across the globe, its unique appeal is that it leverages Scotland’s cultural heritage to help such users accelerate their success by tapping into the wealth of knowledge, experience and potential opportunity that exists in this network.

Interactive Scotland has helped Kiltr gain a better understanding of the market dynamics and the potential global opportunities for its network, using market research and intelligence. Kiltr is also working with Interactive Scotland to explore different business models suitable for its market place and future overseas expansion plans.

Brian Halferty, CEO of Kiltr, said,“We’re still in the very early stages of our development, but we know there is massive potential for our business. The support from Interactive Scotland has been invaluable and we plan to launch our public beta in spring 2010 and hope to attract a large part of the professional Scottish Diaspora.”

Interactive Scotland has a dedicated team of expert advisors able to provide:

• tailored, in-depth marketing research and intelligence based on advisors’ industry contacts and latest market sources

• expertise in the areas of concept, feasibility, validation and development to take ideas to market

• expert advice to shape business models and appropriate routes to market

• access to an unrivalled network of international partner contacts for commercial sales opportunities, specialist funding, technical diligence, product development and market intelligence.

The Interactive Scotland service has been developed in response to industry demand for business growth support for the sector. The service contributes to the industry strategy for Scotland’s digital media sector, which aims to double the value of Scotland’s digital media sector to£6.3bn by 2012. To view the full strategy document and engage in discussions on the issues raised, visit www.digitalinspiration.org.uk.

Businesses can contact Interactive Scotland by telephoning 0845 607 8787, emailing info@interactivescotland.com and visiting www.interactivescotland.com. The service is delivered on behalf of Scottish Enterprise by Innovation Centres Scotland and New Media Partners (nmp).

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

• The digital media and software sectors in Scotland employ over 42,000 people in over 5000 companies (2006).

• Scottish companies in these sectors have a combined turnover of£3.16 billion per annum (2006).

• Growth in Scotland’s sector has been robust, with employment and turnover increasing by 6% and 35% respectively between 2000 and 2006.

• Between 2005 and 2007, Scottish-based digital media businesses secured thirty five investments with a total value of£21.8m.

• The GVA Annual Average Growth Rate for the sector between 1998 and 2005 was 4.1%.

• The sector has a GVA per employee of£65,291 (2005).

• Scotland is home to games companies which have made a significant global impact such as Realtime Worlds (securing $81 million of venture capital since 2006) and Rockstar North (developers of the fastest selling global entertainment product of all time, the video game Grand Theft Auto IV).

• There is a strong broadcast TV presence including BBC Scotland, stv and Channel 4, and an independent TV production sector with strengths in a number of genres.

• The Scottish ICT sector features many companies who compete with great success internationally including Craneware, Axios Systems and Memex.

• The Seabraes Yards development in Dundee is located next to the city’s cultural quarter. This purpose-built, 20 acre, city centre environment provides high-quality accommodation for start-ups, indigenous businesses and inward investors in the creative industries. Seabraes Yards is one of Scotland’s most high-profile and important investment projects: one that will see more than£50 million injected into the area over the next 10 years and will give a further boost to Tayside's already successful and fast growing digital media and creative industries sectors

• The Pacific Quay area of Glasgow is being developed as a national hub for media, technology and creative businesses in Scotland - encouraging collaborative partnerships and idea generation between companies at a local and international level. To date Scottish Enterprise has invested£55m in the area, leveraging further investment of over£250m. Key anchor tenants at Pacific Quay include BBC Scotland - featuring the most advanced broadcasting centre in Europe, Scottish Television, Glasgow Science Centre and radio station Galaxy Scotland. The Hub building is home to a variety of digital media businesses, including the Glasgow School of Art’s Digital Design Studios and major TV production company Shed Media Scotland. Film City Glasgow– a partnership project with Glasgow City Council– houses some of the top production and post production companies and facilities in the country such as Keo North, Sigma Films, Serious Facilities and Savalas.

• Scotland has great strengths in its academic institutions including the University of Abertay, which designed and launched the world’s first degree in Computer Games Design and the University of Edinburgh where the new£42 million purpose-built Informatics Forum has created a world-leading facility for the School of Informatics.

Media contacts:

For further media information on Scottish Enterprise, please contact:

Ruth Andrew, Scottish Enterprise

Tel: 0141 228 2717

Mobile: 07768 615 154

Email: ruth.andrew@scotent.co.uk

For further media information on nmp, please contact:

Franklin Rae Communications

+44 (0) 20 7490 4050

Mary Jones: mary@franklinrae.com

Ross Gerrie: ross@franklinrae.com

Scottish Enterprise

http://www.scottish-enterprise.com

Head office and contact details:

Atrium Court

50 Waterloo Street

Glasgow

G2 6HQ

Tel: +44(0)141 204 1111

Fax: +44(0)141 248 1600


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