Friday’s Independent Review of the Creative Industries – commissioned by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport – was strongly in support of greater government funding for the games sector.
It crucially proposed that an investment of 23.7m in the sector, targeted at smaller businesses, would deliver a GVA return of 106m for the economy as a whole. A proposal that has been called for by various trade organisations.
We asked Ukie, TIGA and a representative of the proposed ‘BGI’, all of which are namechecked in the publication, to comment on the funding recommendation and other games-related sections of the report.
Ukie CEO, Dr Jo Twist said:
We very much welcome the recognition of the games sector throughout today’s Bazalgette Review and the recommendations it has made that will benefit the sector. We particularly welcome the recommendation to invest 23.7 million over five years to extend the UK Games Fund. We have consistently called for more funding for games, most recently in our ‘Manifesto for unlocking growth in the games industry‘.
We were also very pleased to see other initiatives that we have called for being recommended such as government recognition of esports, increased funding for skills initiatives, improvements to export programmes and more support for games clusters as per the recommendations made in our ‘Growing the Games Industry in Coventry and Warwickshire – A Blueprint for Growth’ report, published earlier this year.
We shall now be working hard to turn these recommendations into tangible support, from UK government, for games businesses throughout the UK."
Dr Richard Wilson, CEO of TIGA, said:
"TIGA strongly supports the Bazalgette review’s conclusion that the Government should intervene to improve access to finance in the games industry.
"Maintaining and expanding the role and resources of the U.K. Games Fund is a great idea. This will help many small developers to access capital to grow their studios.
"TIGA also believes that the Government should establish TIGA’s proposed Games Investment Fund. This would provide grants and pound for pound matched funding for developers. TIGA’s Games Investment Fund could be managed by the UK Games Fund or by the proposed British Games Institute."
Rick Gibson, speaking for the proposed BGI initiative, said:
"The UK Games Fund is an important part of the games eco-system and we welcome the call for new funding for the games sector in today’s Bazalgette Review. We are happy that the Review also referenced our BGI initiative and recommended that the government should take a more strategic approach to fostering growth in the video games industry and highlighting its cultural impacts.
"After a lengthy and open consultation, the BGI team is submitting its proposal for funding for cultural games, games culture and games skills to the Treasury today and we thank TIGA, Ukie and over 75 games, arts, investment and education organisations who have fed into the proposal in detail, as well as the 510 organisations that have now lent BGI their support."
You can read the Independent Review of the Creative Industries in full.