'We need much better official statistics on the true size and shape of the game industry,' says Jo Twist
Game industry trade body UKIE has called on the government for a better and more accurate measurement of the sector.
Speaking at a UK Music hosted panel session, UKIE CEO Jo Twist said official statistics measuring the game industry’s size are not as good as they could be, and said the organisation was working with the government to help ensure all companies are recognised.
Twist said that by showing a thriving UK game sector, the industry could attract more investment all over the country, rather than just London.
“We know that the official statistics are not as good as they should be and we need much better official statistics on the true size and shape of the game industry, and indeed the creative industries as a whole,” she said.
“We are working with the ONS to make sure the government’s own system is picking up all the companies it should be.”
She added: “The first thing, of course, is to find the areas where companies are springing up. A huge amount can be done just by highlighting the existing success stories and making sure that the attention isn’t all drawn to Tech City in London.
"Showing the investment community that games is a thriving sector, and that companies can succeed wherever they are, will be the first step in unlocking capital and helping games companies to grow.”
Twist also spoke about increased support for small development studios, with more needing to be done to ensure they have a sustainable future.
“The games industry offers huge potential for growth in all parts of the UK, and a major part of this in future will be the appearance of more and more successful small studios,” she said.
“We are already seeing some great success in clusters around the country, including Leamington Spa, Dundee and Bristol. The government has to recognise this organic growth and do whatever it can to support it.
“Once identified, we need to do everything we can to support these companies and help them grow. Access to finance and access to skills are both absolutely vital issues for every company operating in a digital economy."
Develop conducted its own research of the UK development sector in the latest Develop 100. The UK Studio Hot Listed includes profiles on the top 100 studios in the UK, as well as a directory of more than 500 developers across the country, complete with date founded and their location.