TIGA: 65 per cent of UK studios have fewer than four staff

Micro studios leading the way according to trade body’s latest report
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UK developer trade body TIGA has revealed that the number of micro studios across the nation is on the rise.

The organisation’s latest report, Making Games In The UK Today: 2016, reveals that 65 per cent of studios based in Britain have four or fewer employees. That’s a five per cent increase since 2014.

Only 16 per cent of UK studios house 15 or more staff, down from 38 per cent in 2014. This is no doubt partly due to the closures of major studios such as Lionhead, Evolution and Relentless.

The number of studios in the UK rose from 664 to 688 in the year ending March 2016, while the headcount rose from 10,869 to 11,893.

“Large studios are becoming as rare as hens’ teeth: only 2 per cent of studios employ more than 150 people,” said TIGA CEO Dr Richard Wilson. “Yet it was the big and medium-sized studios which drove an increase in the UK’s developer headcount by an annualised rate of 7.5 per cent in the year ending March 2016.

“The prevalence of micro-studios reflects the popularity of mobile games development and a strong start-up culture in the UK’s games industry.

“Small studios play an important part in creating jobs and promoting innovation. Yet they are also vulnerable. Over 130 games companies closed down in the year to March 2016 – nearly 12 per cent of the entire studio population. 69 per cent of companies closing down had under five staff, which demonstrates that the smallest companies are the most vulnerable, especially when self-publishing.”

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