Quebec: New Home For Video Game Industry

If you thought the United States was the place to go if you want to work with video games, you are wrong. Government incentives in Quebec has drawn many of the game companies to move north.

Companies ranging from Electronic Arts to Ubisoft have been drawn to the province as a result of a refundable tax credit that subsidizes 37.5 per cent of a videogame company’s payroll. And that’s not all: There are more credits for companies that make French versions of their games, the piece reports.

That’s had a big impact: citing economic development agency Invest Quebec, Reuters reports that 86 companies and 8,236 jobs have moved to Quebec as a result of the program, on which Quebec spent $100-million last year, up from $83-million in 2009.

Major global game manufacturer Ubisoft, maker of Assassin’s Creed, has become the leading video game employer in Montreal, Reuters reports, with 2,100 developers working in the city.

Electronic Arts, the second-biggest U.S. videogame company, now has 750 employees in Montreal. And THQ, the California-based maker of “WWE Smackdown vs. Raw” videogame, has become one of the newest arrivals, recently hiring 145 new employees, with plans to hire another 100 every year for the next five years, according to Reuters.

The company was drawn by the tax incentives — and local talent, and there’s been some poaching going on, Reuters reports.

Photo by Ángelo González

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