Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Manitoba announces support for new media projects

Manitoba Government News Release

Three Manitoba companies have been awarded a total of $140,000 in funding to assist in producing, developing and marketing their new media projects, Science, Technology, Energy and Mines Minister Jim Rondeau announced today.

"The Manitoba government is a strong supporter of the digital media sector because it is cutting edge technology," said Rondeau. "We want this young and vibrant industry to grow so young people educated in this field will want to live, work and invest in their home province."

Rondeau made the announcement at a one-day event focusing on digital gaming technologies and developments within the industry.

Digital media companies receiving assistance under the Manitoba Interactive Digital Media Fund include:

cafesonique.com - awarded $70,000 in financial assistance for the development of an animated 3-D online website for musicians, music industry players and music lovers worldwide;

Complex Games - awarded $60,000 in financial assistance for the development of three video games focusing on the action, adventure and strategy genres; and

First Voice Multi-media Inc. - awarded $10,000 in financial assistance for the development of an interactive web-based DVD on the people, history and culture of the M├ętis.

The $300,000 Manitoba Interactive Digital Media Fund provides assistance with production, professional development and marketing.It also provides non-repayable advances to support activities and initiatives that contribute to the development of interactive digital media in Manitoba.

Video game and new media developers may also apply for the Manitoba New Media Production Grantwhich provides eligible companies with grant assistance equal to 45 per cent of the eligible Manitoba labour costs directly attributable to the development of an eligible new media product.

To be eligible for this grant, new media companies must apply for a registration certificate in advance of production to help raise interim funding.A final grant cheque is issued after the entire project is completed and a final copy of the production is available.

"Manitoba can be a leader in digital media product development if the industry is supported," said Rondeau."Our government is working hard to ensure new media developers in this province have the tools they will need to be successful."

There are more than 230 digital media companies in Manitoba with demonstrated expertise in 2-Dand 3-D computer animation, web development, visual effects, CD-ROM and software development, and music and sound processing.The video game industry in Manitoba has grown 1,850 per cent during the last two years, putting Manitoba fourth in Canada after British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec.

More information about the new media digital industry is available at at the Manitoba Science, Technology, Energy and Mines Home Page

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