The UK Brain Drain to Canada, USA

According to a survey conducted by Games Investor Consulting, 41 percent of jobs lost in the United Kingdom between 2009 and 2011 relocated to other countries with tax codes and incentives that favored the video game and entertainment industry.

The largest share of departing developers and game industry professionals ended up in Canada, with the United States being the second most popular destination. Former employees of Bizarre Creations, which were closed by Activision last year, were highlighted heavily in the report. Staff that spoke to Games Investor Consulting said that as much as 35 percent of the company’s former staff had left the UK workforce to find jobs in other countries. They did not specify which countries they ended up in.

The report also notes that between 2008 and 2011 the UK games industry workforce declined by ten percent.
In that same time period the game development industry’s contribution to the UK’s GDP had fallen by almost £250 million, according to the survey. The report – “Making Games in the UK Today: A Census of the UK Developer and Digital Publishing Sector” – will be published by trade group TIGA later this month.

The survey included “75 percent of the UK’s games business.”

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