The Power of Tax Breaks in Ontario's Technology Corridor

August 19, 2011 -

Members of Ontario's "Technology Corridor" attended Gamescom in Cologne, Germany to show their support for the culture, work ethic and incentives the Canadian region provides to developers. Over the past two years, Canada's gaming industry has expanded 11 percent annually and is forecasted to grow 17 percent in each of the next two years. Executives from the Ontario Technology Corridor were at Gamescom to demonstrate the province's "winning combination" of talent and tax credits. Canada is one of the world's top three game producing nations, mostly due to its hard sell to developers in other regions in the world.

"Ontario continues to offer the talent and the financial incentives that make this region such a strong part of the digital entertainment industry," said Larry MacKinnon, Director of Business Development for Technology in London Ontario and member of the Ontario Technology Corridor. "Our job at Gamescom is to add to our tremendous home-grown crop of companies and help demonstrate that Ontario is a prime destination in North America for gaming investments."

The power of the region is a combination of Federal and Ontario provincial research and development tax credits that gives developers and tech companies what the group calls "the most favorable tax treatment among G-8 countries." This allows Ontario companies the ability to cut R&D expenditures by up to 63 percent.

The group highlighted a few of the companies that are taking advantage of tax breaks and incentives in the region including Arkadium Inc., who opened an office in Toronto in July of this year and plans to produce ten new games in the next 12 months; Gameloft Inc., who began hiring 205 people for a new Toronto gaming studio; Silicon Knights Inc., who announced in July plans to double its staff by adding 80 new jobs; and Morro Images Inc. (a sister firm to Morro Images of Potsdam-Babelsberg, Germany), who is working with Silicon Knights as Morro Images expands their current visual effects operation in St. Catharines. Other companies that are part of the Ontario Technology Corridor include Ascension CrossMedia, Ubisoft, Drinkbox Studios, Fuel Industries and Magmic Games.

This week Ontario and Cisco inked a deal for major expansions to its Ottawa and Toronto facilities. Cisco Chairman and CEO John Chambers said that "Ontario has long been globally recognized as a centre of excellence for IT innovation," adding that "both the Province and Cisco share a dynamic vision for building on the substantial IT R&D capability resident here and we see a key opportunity to join forces to further Ontario’s innovation machine."

"Ontario is well positioned to compete with other jurisdictions who are trying to attract gaming firms and we have a lot to offer -- that will be one of my message at the conference," said Darius Basarab, Senior Business Development Specialist with the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Trade.

Ontario's lead agency for provincial incentives in digital media is the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC). To date the OMDC IDM Fund has contributed $7.7 million to 76 projects with budgets totaling $32.7 million and continues to offer the following incentives:

- Ontario Interactive Digital Media Tax Credit: refunds 35-40 percent of eligible production costs

- Ontario Computer Animation and Special Effects Tax Credit: refunds 20 percent of labor costs

- OMDC Interactive Digital Media Fund: up to $150,000 in project production funding, up to a maximum of 50 percent of the project budget.

Ontario's entertainment and creative cluster employs nearly 300,000 while contributing $12.2 billion to the province's GDP. In addition, 22 Ontario colleges and universities produce 18,000 graduates per year from 174 specialized digital media programs including 3D animation, film studies, advanced computer programming, math, and hardware engineering.

Canada's federal corporate income tax rate will fall from 18 percent in 2010 to 15 percent by 2012 -- less than half of the top U.S. federal marginal corporate income tax rate, and the lowest in the G7 plus the lowest R&D costs in the G7, with a 12.9 percent advantage over the U.S. Canada also has the world's soundest banking system according to the World Economic Forum.

For more information about the Ontario Technology Corridor, check out www.ontariotechnologycorridor.com.


 
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Krono@Andrew To respond to your early remark about where the lack of ethics was, part of it was what Kyle Orland suggested in his article. Crossing the line from reporter to advocate. Journalists aren't supposed to support a side the way they discussed.09/19/2014 - 11:18pm
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Technogeek"While you could throw a dart at the internet and find a site where Gamers in General are being harassed, doxxed, hacked, just because they are being perceived as white males." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FopyRHHlt3M09/19/2014 - 8:47pm
Andrew EisenSarkeesian and Quinn continue to get harassed and attacked (with the majority of said harassment and attacks being about their gender) and so, the story stays in the headlines. If Wolfe gets swatted again, it will be in the news again.09/19/2014 - 6:56pm
Andrew EisenYou mean Wesley Wolfe? The swatting appeared to be over his DMCA takedown, not due to his color or gender.09/19/2014 - 6:53pm
ConsterSo Sleaker, what's the sand like?09/19/2014 - 6:53pm
quiknkold@CraigR. Spreading Misandry is not going to kill Misogyny. Its just going to fuel it. half the people supporting that arguement are mysoginists themselves. They just dont know it.09/19/2014 - 6:51pm
Sleaker@CraigR - there's nothing to get over. There's no issue here until someone does an actual study on harassment rates.09/19/2014 - 6:48pm
quiknkoldWe never said Gamers were the only victims. Yes, Anita and Zoe got a bad rap. Yes, Zoe's ex was way out of line. Do I disagree with them? Depends on the arguement. Did they deserve what happened to them? Hell Effing No.09/19/2014 - 6:48pm
Sleakerbut news outlets have a tendency to blow up and sensationalize it if the person can be desrcibed as a minority, maybe because it gets the hits. How long were the 2 recent swattings in the news for? 1 was a white male developer....09/19/2014 - 6:47pm
Craig R.Get over it.09/19/2014 - 6:46pm
Craig R.Gamers are just lucky that their behavior wasn't brought to attention of everybody else sooner, and gamers are pissy about that09/19/2014 - 6:46pm
SleakerIn fact, just because a few female developers every year get harassed doesn't make it systematic. As a whole developers are harassed by people.. Swatted, etc.09/19/2014 - 6:46pm
Craig R.And if you don't think misogyny and sexism is widespread, then you're living with your head buried in the sand09/19/2014 - 6:45pm
Craig R.Apparently it's the gamers who are the only victims from GamerGate09/19/2014 - 6:44pm
Sleaker@AE - 1 person getting harassed is a problem. But just because 1 person gets harassed for being a female developer doesn't mean it's a systematic problem or indicative of a whole demographic.09/19/2014 - 6:44pm
Andrew EisenI don't believe anyone said or even remotely implied that harassing anyone was okay.09/19/2014 - 6:41pm
 

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