An interesting few days hosting Chinese digital and animation businesses in Bristol, mainly as part of a Chinese Ministry of Commerce delegation to the UK. The purpose was to create connections and collaborative opportunities for trade between the UK and visiting businesses.
There was a clear sense that the Chinese government has identified the animation industry as representing an opportunity for significant growth – according to the State Administration for Radio, Film & TV there has been a 40 fold increase in production levels over recent years – and has initiated preferential taxation, industry funding and incubation parks in support of that aim.
In practice there appear to be 2 major developments opportunities for UK animation content producers:
- IP exploitation across multiple channels, including specifically publishing, but encompassing to merchandising, film/TV, digital etc. For smaller businesses there is also potential to raise private investment against these rights.
- In addition there is a rapid take up of 3G mobile internet in China, generating demand for content – 233 million accessed the internet via mobile last year, double that in 2009.
This impression was reinforced during the visit with a UK mobile app developer generating immediate interest in licensing his content into China from two members of the delegation.
I’m producing a UK / China Animation Forum (supported by UKTI, DCMS and others) to be held in Beijing on 1st and 2nd December, providing a platform for UK digital and animation businesses to showcase their work and meet key clients and potential partners. This will launch formally next week but in the interim please contact me if you’d like more information.