Karnataka, first Indian state to announce special policy, incentives, for animation and gaming industry

01st March 2012
Karnataka, first Indian state to announce special policy, incentives, for animation and gaming industry
The team behind the Karnataka Animation & Gaming Policy, ranged behind ( from left) Biren Ghose, B.N Bacchegowda, M.N Vidyasshankar and Chakravarthi Mohan, MD, BITS ( IndiaTechOnline Photo)

Bangalore, February 29 2012: The Indian state of Karnataka – home to India’s Silicon City, Bangalore, released its much awaited policy on Animation, Visual effects, Gaming and Comics (AVGC) on Wednesday. The Policy was unveiled by B N Bacchegowda, the state’s Minister of Labour standing in for the Chief Minister at an event chaired by M N Vidyashankar, Principal Secretary Department of IT, BT, and S & T of state government.
Karnataka has thus become the first state in India to come out with a separate policy dedicated to AVGC. ( it was incidentally also the the first state to have come out with a Semiconductor Policy.) Vidyashankar, in his address, said the gaming and animation sector in Karnataka, which has the potential to generate revenues of Rs 10,000 crores by the end of 2012, stands to gain a lot of momentum from this new policy. It aims to make Karnataka the most preferred destination for AVGC. The state is already home to 20-plus training institutes imparting AVGC related training through more than 60 campuses across the State with more than 10,000 students undergoing training. ‘’The policy is an initiative to promote Karnataka as a lucrative outsourcing destination as well as attract Venture Capital funding for new entrants in AVGC sector‘’, he added.
The announcement of the policy was followed by a panel discussion on the Government - Industry panel on the KAVGC Policy in association with Association of Bangalore Animation Industry (ABAI) which was moderated by Biren Ghose, ABAI President, and Country Head of Technicolor India.
Said Ghose “The AVGC Policy is a welcome stimulant which will considerably ‘turbo- charge’ this nascent, creative industry and help it realize a significant scale in both international and domestic scenario. Besides media and entertainment, areas such as e-learning, advertising, industrial design and social development projects will also be enabled. The Venture Capital Fund and Digital Art Centres will generate a new generation of opportunities and make Karnataka their hub.”
Karnataka has the distinction and advantage of being home to some of the big names of the AVGC Industry such as Technicolor (including DreamWorks dedicated unit), Tata Elxsi, MPC, Dhruva Interactive, Liquid Comics (formerly Virgin Comics), Prime Focus and technology players such as Intel, HP, AMD, Wipro , Adobe, Dell, IBM, Oracle and EMC.
ABAI (The Association of Bangalore Animation Industries) has been active in Bangalore since 2005 and represents the AVGC community in taking the cause of AVGC related activities forward by holding regular state level events and expos through private partnerships.
Key elements of the policy:
Ten fine art colleges across Karnataka would be identified as Digital Art
Centres (DAC) to implement digital art and animation curriculum.
A Finishing Academy cum Incubation Centre would be set up in Bangalore in the first phase of the KAVGC Centre of Excellence. The State Government will also offer financial assistance for the Academy/Centre towards Capital Expenditure such as equipment, infrastructure and software setup estimated to cost about Rs.500 million.
An AVGC Center of Excellence would be set up in 10 – 15 acres of land at Bangalore. The Centre of Excellence would be set up on Public Private Partnership mode, with financial contribution from State Government and Central Government.
A VC Fund for the KAVGC Sector would be set up with an initial fund of
Rs.500 million,which would be funded jointly by the
Government of Karnataka with Private Venture Capitalists with Government contribution of 26%, to meet the needs of the entrepreneurs in Karnataka.
The AVGC sector in the State would be eligible to avail of the fiscal Incentives and concessions as provided in the Karnataka Industrial Policy 2009-2014.
Full text of policy: http://www.animationxpress.com/images/KAVG_Policy.pdf  
( courtesy: AnimationXPress).