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Future of Video Games & Esports Q3 2023

Giving UK video games the buff it needs for unwavering industry growth

3d illustration. Old-fashioned gamepads, game console and floppy disks(cartridges) in pink blue gradient neon light. Retro media, 90s entertainment. 3d rendering.
3d illustration. Old-fashioned gamepads, game console and floppy disks(cartridges) in pink blue gradient neon light. Retro media, 90s entertainment. 3d rendering.
iStock / Getty Images Plus / BurKar

Dr Richard Wilson OBE

Chief Executive Officer, TIGA

To ensure the UK remains the best place for the gaming industry, the Government needs to create an environment favourable for investment and sector growth.


The UK is home to a vibrant video games industry, lauded for its innovation and unique storytelling capabilities. The sector also makes a substantial contribution to the UK economy and supports rewarding careers.  

UK video games industry growth 

According to research by The Independent Game Developers’ Association (TIGA), headcount in the UK video games industry has grown by an annual average of over 9% since 2014. For our industry to maintain its edge on the global stage, sustained Government support is paramount. 

Video games expenditure credit 

In the past decade, TIGA has been instrumental in lobbying the UK Government to introduce and maintain policies that strengthen our industry. Chief among these was the establishment of Video Games Tax Relief (VGTR), soon to be the Video Games Expenditure Credit (VGEC).  

It incentivises development by allowing studios to claim back a substantial portion of production costs. It also enables the UK video games industry to compete on a more level playing field against studios in other jurisdictions. VGTR has been critical in driving dramatic headcount growth in the sector since 2014. 

Fostering innovation is not merely
about cost-saving measures.

Translating creativity into growth  

Fostering innovation is not merely about cost-saving measures. It’s about enabling studios, especially newer or smaller businesses, to bring their creative visions to life and to scale up and grow.  

The UK Games Fund is designed to empower young game developers and early-stage studios to transform ideas into working prototypes and showcase them to potential investors. It’s set to receive an uplift of £5 million from the Government. With this funding, the UK Games Fund’s total resources will reach £13.4 million over the next two years. 

Moreover, the Government has announced plans to invest a minimum of £50 million in the upcoming wave of the Creative Industries Clusters Programme, led by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).  

UK video games investment fund 

The introduction of a larger UK Video Games Investment Fund (VGIF) will also give developers the necessary financial support for our industry to reach its full potential. This would provide pound-for-pound match funding of £75,000-£500,000, empowering studios to realise projects. 

Research indicates that establishing a VGIF could create over 1,400 direct and indirect jobs over five years. Countries like Canada, the USA and China are heavily investing in their domestic industries. If the UK is to maintain its standing and seize a larger share of this market, Government support must not waver. 

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