Lacking Tax Incentives, Tar Heel State Struggles to Lure Devs

April 15, 2010 -

North Carolina, while home to quite a few game developers, does not offer tax incentives to those creating interactive entertainment, which may be costing the state in its attempts to entice more companies to take up residence within its borders.

A piece in the NewsObserver offers this sentiment after attending the recently concluded Triangle Game Conference in Raleigh. State Representative (D) Pryor Gibson (pictured) has previously sponsored bills that would grant 15.0 percent tax breaks to interactive developers, but that legislation “has gone nowhere,” and the outlook for such a bill passing in the future is bleak, due to the state’s “budget crunch.”

Gibson doesn't appear to have given up though, and is said to be working “with fellow legislators on a bill for the coming session that will be attractive to video-game companies looking to expand and that will help retain existing businesses.”

In light of the lack of incentives, companies like developer Funcom, who maintains a customer support center in Durham, North Carolina, recently chose Montreal, Canada as home to a new development studio, unable to resist the lure of tax credits for labor that could reach up to 37.5 percent.

Funcom’s CEO Trond Arne Aas said that such incentives make Quebec, “one of the most cost-effective locations in the world.”

Troy Knight, a Managing Director of the Raleigh-based consulting and recruiting company atVaco, added, “If we don't offer incentives, I think we're going to start losing companies. They're going to look at Canada, Georgia, Texas, because they are offering incentives.”


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