Games trade associations to remain separate

Tiga: ‘UKIE merger deal is off’

Negotiations for a merger between Britain’s two biggest game trade bodies have broken down, Develop can reveal.

Tiga will today issue a statement to the press claiming it is no longer considering a merger with UKIE. It appears that Tiga, the association for developers, was the group most interested in walking away from the table.

“Tiga and its board would like to make it clear that we have no plans to merge with any other organisation,” the organisation says.

“We do not see value in distracting ourselves with talks towards such an end while the games industry faces pressing matters including Games Tax Relief, R&D tax credits, improving access to finance, migration policy, education and skills and IP.”

UKIE, the association for games publishers, recently realigned its operations to better represent the games development sector in the UK.

Both groups have repeatedly been asked to combine forces and bring a unanimous voice to the games industry – though the plan does have its opponents too.

Eidos Life President Ian Livingstone recently said there was “a fundamental difference between the two organisations historically, but where we are today with online content, the differences between the two are disappearing.”

He added: “Over time there is going to be a greater coming together as the differences between the two organisations disappear.”

Culture minister Ed Vaizey had in recent years backed any merger between the two, though in early February at a public event he dodged a question on the issue.

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