UK is "ridiculously expensive" for studio expansion, says Kotick

UK is
Michael French

By Michael French

June 30th 2008 at 4:30PM

Activision boss says lack of Government support means high cost of living, which impacts staff happiness

Bobby Kotick, the CEO of Activision, has 'ruled out' any further expansion of the company's UK workforce, saying it is "ridiculously expensive" to live in Britain.

Speaking to The Times in a piece about the wide appeal of Guitar Hero, Kotick - whose firm employs 1,000 people already across its development, publishing, and distribution interests in Liverpool, Slough and Birmingham respectively - mentioned that a lack of Government support is holding back the games industry's growth in Britain. And he thinks wages in the country are too high.

“It is ridiculously expensive to live in the UK, especially in London,” Kotick said. “What dictates our expansion plans would be whether we can compensate our employees fairly and whether they can achieve the quality of life that they want."

Kotick said that tax incentives in the likes of Canada made for a more economically exciting location to expand.

“We think about development planning and where we can get tax incentives that would help us do that. Our employee base tends to be young, say, in their thirties. And I think that they would like to be in a city rather than in Slough.”