Mayor plans to make London gaming capital with annual festival and meetings

Boris Johnson has been reimagined as a Minecraft character as part of a £1.2m plan to turn London into the video gaming capital of the world.

The Mayor announced the new three-year Games London programme in London, 19 January. The programme will include the London Games Festival, 1-10 April 2016, and a range of networking events and training initiatives.

Games London is being funded by the London Enterprise Panel (LEP) and launched by Film London and games trade body Ukie.

Johnson, who is chair of the LEP, said: “London is already a star player when it comes to games and interactive entertainment, but international competition is fierce and we need to ensure our city can compete with our global gaming rivals.”

Games London hopes to build on the success of the UK games sector, which generated £2.5bn in 2015. It will also make use of the Video Games Tax Relief, which allows UK game developers to claim back up to 20% of their production costs.

Dr Jo Twist, CEO of Ukie, said: “The UK is home to some of the best and most experienced games talent in the world and is already responsible for the most successful and creative global titles. This welcome backing from the Mayor for Games London will celebrate and highlight London as a key business hub for creativity and innovation in the UK.”

The investment in gaming and these events, said Johnson, would “supercharge” an important sector for the UK economy.

Paul Colston

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Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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