Dutch government stall GameOn fund - MCV

Dutch government stall GameOn fund

Founder Reinout te Brake says applying for funds has become "almost a full-time job"
Author:
Publish date:
reinout te brake.jpg

The Netherlands' €10m investment fund for gaming start-ups is in jeopardy as its founder struggles to gain access to the government finance that was to be a crucial pillar of the initiative.

GameOn launched last year and is targeted at new and promising games developers. Founder Reinout te Brake told Develop back in March that he hoped it would help Holland nurture "the next Supercell".

However, plans for the government to match any funding GameOn offered has been stalled due to the complex nature of applying for such finance, according to GamesIndustry.

"We talked to the government extensively," te Brake told a Dutch public service broadcaster. "I had to jump through so many hoops. It became too time consuming for me to focus only on this.

"They would give us €5m and we would match that with €5m from our side. That didn't happen. It almost became a full-time job to apply for financing and it still wasn't sure whether we would get the money or not."

However, in a statement from the ministry of Economic Affairs, the government claims it hasn't received any applications from GameOn. It also claims it offers applicants assistance with the process, having made €34m in investments to eight different funds in the last two years.

te Brake plans to continue GameOn with the help of private investors, following what he describes as a complete lack of understanding on the government's part when it comes to games and tech industries.

"They want a ten-year plan," he said. "Just shoot me. In the tech scene, you either fail fast and hard and start again, or you roll on towards an exit, a sale. It's clear Holland is trying – that's what I have learned for the ministry of Economic Affairs."

Related