We speak to the trade body's CEO, Dr Jo Twist

Develop Awards 2015: Partner spotlight – UKIE

Kicking off this week’s spotlights on the companies supporting the 2015 Develop Awards, we catch up with UKIE CEO Dr Jo Twist.

The head of the UK trade body champions the diversity of the finalists and explains why our games industry serves as a ‘blueprint’ for the growth the government seeks from other creative and digital sectors.

Partner spotlight: UKIE

Year Founded: 1989 (Originally as ELSPA)

For any readers who might not know you, tell us a little more about your company and its goal.
We represent the UK games and interactive entertainment industry, working with our members and the wider sector to make the UK the best place in the world to make and sell games.

We work on the games sectors’ behalf with government to ensure that the industry is properly heard and represented in parliament, and we provide a strong steer to policy makers on what the sector needs to thrive. We run positive campaigns for the good of the wider UK industry and do what we can to change the media perception of games.

We also make introductions within our network for companies to do business, providing bespoke training, advice and practical support to games companies.

What differentiates you from similar outfits? What’s unique about you?
Ukie is the only trade body that represents the wider UK games and interactive entertainment industry, acting as a single voice for businesses of all sizes, from incredibly talented independent studios and larger developers to multinational businesses and platform holders. We act locally, and look globally by making sure the ecosystem in the UK it at its best for companies, as well as promoting and connecting the UK sector internationally.

What excites and/or encourages you about the games industry and games development today?
The relentless innovation and pace of change that is inherently part of the games industry and the growth of the UK sector in the last few years. The range of business models, technologies and creative content is hugely diverse, and we believe the UK games sector is a blueprint for growth for the wider digital and creative economy – something that we’ll be making sure that government understands.

Regarding the Develop Awards finalists, what does it say to you about the industry and development today?
It’s fantastic to see that the Develop Awards has again had such a high calibre of nominees. The huge variety of companies in with a shot of winning shows the range of interactive entertainment being produced right on our doorstep and what an exciting time it is to be involved in the UK’s industry. The new categories for 2015 show how the industry is diversifying in exciting ways and it is great to see these areas included in the awards.

Do you have a message for the finalists?
We wish you could all win! And of course wish all of our members and all the other finalists the very best of luck at the awards.

Anything else you’d like to add about your company and the Develop Awards?
We are very proud to be supporting the Develop Awards again – it is always so much fun to be winning on the seaside!

About the Develop Awards

This year’s Develop Awards ceremony will be held at the Brighton Hilton Metropole on Wednesday, July 15th. It runs alongside the Develop: Brighton conference, organised by Tandem Events.

You can book your tickets over at www.developawards.com, or by contacting Kathryn Humphrey via khumphrey@nbmedia.com or call her on 01992 535646.

Other Develop Awards supporters include gold partners Amiqus and Unity, table gift partner OPM, drinks reception partner Keywords Studios and event partners Green Man Loaded, InnoGames, LocalizeDirect and Universally Speaking and Develop: Brighton. Unity is also partner for the Micro Studio Award, while Iconicfuture is sponsoring the Use of a Licence or IP Award.

For more information on sponsorship opportunities, contact Charlotte Nangle via cnangle@nbmedia.com or call her on 01992 515303.

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