Introducing IO member This Space Works
October 20, 2014
If you lease an office you're paying for that space even when the boardroom door is locked and it sits unused. But a new Toronto company is trying to change that. Launched by two Canadian women, This Space Works is to meeting rooms what Airbnb is to apartments and Uber is to cars. It is a service that connects people who have extra work spaces - even if it's just for one afternoon

IO ED discusses the business of games on the PROFIT BusinessCast
October 20, 2014
IO Executive Director Christa Dickenson appeared on the PROFIT BusinessCast last week to discuss the business of games and our GameON: Finance conference. Listen to the podcast here

IO article on Ontario IDM career opportunities
October 7, 2014

Interactive Ontario Executive Director Christa Dickenson contributed to a just-released digital feature on Ontario careers. The article focuses on the diversity of careers available to those looking to work in interactive digital media in Ontario. Read the full article here



The Digi Awards is Bringing Back the Purple Carpet Preshow & Wants YOU to Host!
October 7, 2014
The Digi Awards is an annual showcase of remarkable companies, products and creatives in Canada who are making waves in the digital media industry in fields like video, marketing, advertising, mobile and gaming. Their new contest will give one winner a chance to host the Purple Carpet and interview the best-of-the-best in digital content and distribution. Find out how to enter here


GameON: Finance 2014 schedule now available!
September 30, 2014


The schedule and session descriptions for GameON: Finance 2014 are now available! We've extended the deadline for Early Bird tickets to October 7th so you can peruse our fantastic lineup and then take advantage of our best rate.

Sessions include:

Opening Keynote
A Conversation with Mikko Setala, Executive Vice President at Rovio Animation

The Financial Players
Venture capital players from around the world discuss what kinds of deals they see, and what kinds of deals they close.

To Interactivity and Beyond: The Gamification of Documentaries
A Conversation Between Navid Khonsari and Gerry Flahive

Building new markets BRIC by BRIC
A case study on how North American companies are working with companies in Asia - and not losing their shirt over copyright infringement.

Case Study: New Tools, New Directions
How gamers are working with new technologies and how Oculus Rift is changing the direction of gaming. Speakers from Secret Location will break down their Oculus Rift "Sleepy Hollow" project with Fox.

and many others - see the full list here!


Interactive Ontario releases International Digital Media Co-Production: A Guide for Canadian Companies
September 22, 2014


Today Interactive Ontario launched a new report designed to guide Canadian interactive digital media (IDM) producers in taking advantage of the opportunities to create collaborative productions with producers in other jurisdictions. International Digital Media Co-Production: A Guide for Canadian Companies [PDF] was created in association with DEEP Inc and Amythos Media, with funding from the Ontario Media Development Corporation, Canada Media Fund and Bell Fund.

The report serves as a comprehensive guide for Canadian companies wishing to collaborate with content creators in other markets. It outlines the reasons a Canadian company may choose a co-production - such as addressing financing gaps, being able to take on projects of a larger scope and having access to new audiences - as well as some of the challenges they may face.

Additionally the report provides actionable information on funding sources to explore in Australia, France, Germany, United Kingdom and New Zealand.

Read the report in English here [PDF] and French here



Announcing the first wave of GameON: Finance 2014 speakers, with keynotes from Rovio and SuperData Research
September 17, 2014
The GameON: Finance conference will welcome international games industry leaders and Ontario success stories to the stage on November 20 & 21, 2014. Now in its seventh year, GameON: Finance takes place this year at the Bram & Bluma Appel Salon, Toronto Reference Library. 

The first wave of speakers has just been announced and represents a selection of creators, producers, executives and entrepreneurs who will offer insights into the ever-changing business of video games. 

Keynotes
Mikko Setala - Rovio
Mikko Setala of Angry Birds creator Rovio will offer insights gleaned from an extensive background in gaming entrepreneurship. In addition to his role as President of Rovio's North American subsidiaries, he is also an angel investor and has worked as an executive in major software companies and also as the CEO of a listed company.

Joost van Dreunen - SuperData Research
Joost van Dreunen was one of the first academics to study video games and has over fifteen years of commercial research experience in interactive entertainment and technology industries. Anticipating the shift to digital games early on, he founded SuperData in 2009. 

Panelists and Presenters


Interactive Ontario launches Mapping Ontario's Digital Economy (MODE) project
September 3, 2014


Interactive Ontario, with the financial support of the Ontario Media Development Corporation, is pleased to launch Mapping Ontario's Digital Economy (MODE), a project designed to offer a comprehensive picture of Ontario's interactive digital media (IDM) industry. 

The MODE project has mapped the almost 1000 companies creating IDM content in Ontario, allowing for a visual representation of where the province's main IDM clusters occur. The top 3 cities for IDM content production are Toronto, Ottawa and Kitchener-Waterloo, with significant activity in London, Hamilton, St. Catharines/Niagara Falls. 

Companies are encouraged to take part in the project by completing enhanced data, such as company size, lines of business, job categories and more. By participating, companies will help complete a picture of the industry that will allow for more effective policy and funding solutions for this sector. IDM contributes 17,000 full-time equivalent jobs and $1.3b in revenues annually to Ontario's economy. Ontario's IDM industry encompasses a wide variety of companies in subsectors such as video games, eLearning, kids' interactive media, mobile, online content production and more. 

View the map and directory at idm.interactiveontario.com. On October 8th, Interactive Ontario will present MODE at the Interact networking mixer from 6-8pm at Bar Italia (582 College Street, Toronto). 


Game Pill pens case study of Tanked
August 25, 2014
IO member Game Pill has done a case study for Casual Connect magazine on their highly successful companion app for Animal Planet's Tanked series, which follows a family-owned aquarium manufacturing company. 

The case study outlines Game Pill's development process for the game, which hit the top 10 paid games on the App Store. Learn about the opportunities and challenges that came with the project here


Announcing GameON: Finance 2014
August 19, 2014
Now entering its seventh year, GameON: Finance returns on November 20 & 21, 2014 in Toronto. Early bird tickets are on sale now.

The conference offers panels, presentations, keynotes, 1x1 meetings and receptions that give games industry entrepreneurs and investors the chance to network and share knowledge. 

GameON: Finance provides a crash course in the ways that gaming content is currently being monetized as well as insights into trends and opportunities as business models continue to evolve.

Programming is guided by an Advisory Committee of experts from leading companies, ensuring it addresses the issues of interest to the industry.

Meet our Advisory Committee


Independent Producer Program open for November intake
August 13, 2014
The fully-funded Independent Producer Program is looking for candidates interested in starting for its popular and successful annual program. This 10 month program supported by the government gives up to the minute industry information and mentorship to EI eligible individuals who wish to start a business in content production for TV, web, gaming or any screen-based content. The first mandatory info sessions are full, but spots are available for Sept 3, 2014. The program starts in November and application process has commenced.

Full info here: http://wordshopproductions.com/itp/



Communication Arts Interactive Competition Call for Entries
August 11, 2014
Communication Arts magazine, a professional journal for those involved in visual communications, announces its 21st annual Interactive Competition Call for Entries. The deadline for submissions is October 3, 2014.

This juried competition celebrates the best work being done for the Web, DVD, interactive kiosk and handheld devices. Student work is now being accepted for 2015.

Chosen by a jury of distinguished programmers, interface designers and creative directors, the selected entries will be distributed worldwide in the Communication Arts Interactive Annual, both in print and on the iPad, and on commarts.com.

Submission Guidelines and FAQs can be found at: commarts.com/competitions/interactive Past winners can be viewed online at: commarts.com/annuals/interactive



Submit by August 22 for Canadian Screen Awards digital categories
July 28, 2014
Submissions are now open for digital media categories at the Canadian Screen Awards. If you have a project that is cross-platform or produced specifically for digital distribution, apply by the new deadline of August 22, 2014 for the chance to be nominated in one of seven digital categories. Learn more and apply at submissions.academy.ca

In addition, Louis Calabro from the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television, the organization behind the awards, will be on hand at our Interact on August 13th to answer any last minute questions you may have. 



Premier Kathleen Wynne visits Ubisoft Toronto
July 28, 2014
On July 17, Premier Kathleen Wynne, Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure Brad Duguid and MPP Cristina Martins visited IO member Ubisoft Toronto. With support from the province, Ubisoft opened a Toronto production studio in 2009, followed by a state-of-the-art performance capture facility. The Premiere touted Ubisoft's valued role in Ontario's economy saying, "By partnering with businesses like Ubisoft, we are creating the right climate to attract investment, create jobs and show the global economy what Ontario can do."

Canadian Videogame Awards 2014 nominations open
July 14, 2014
The Canadian Videogame Awards will be coming to Toronto for the first time this year and honouring games from both 2013 and 2014. Award submissions for 2014 games are now open. Submit your games by August 31 for the chance to be recognized at this high-profile event.

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