To say that the gaming industry in the UK is booming would be an understatement. The country is increasingly becoming known as fertile ground for innovative games and entrepreneurial developers to thrive. From coders to designers to producers and developers shaping the ecosystem, the gaming sector in the UK will only continue to flourish from here on out. But despite the fact that the industry is booming, it appears that video game stocks are still overlooked and underestimated by investors.
Numbers pulled by the UK Interactive Entertainment (UKIE), the non-profit trade association for the video game industry in the country, reveals that gaming has contributed an astounding £1.35bn to the UK economy, with the industry employing more than 16,000 people. This makes the sector perhaps the most productive among the nation's creative industries. It's gotten to the point that each individual employee contributes over £80,000 to the economy.
It will only be a matter of time before investors come to their senses and realise how much they're losing out on potential revenue by undermining the sheer money-generating power of the gaming industry.
Case in point: payments solutions provider FIS Global explains that game developers have also come to recognise that gaming spans geographies, genders, and generations, and have thus begun introducing new payment options to cater to different types of consumer. With an increase in the amount of digital payment methods available nowadays, there's no doubt that there would be a direct impact on the economy, given that online transactions are much easier to carry out compared to cash-based alternatives. Gamers are able to buy what they want immediately, and companies get paid more easily.
A previous report on The Financial noted that the gaming sector presents an opportunity for business school students who have traditionally found it difficult to dip their toes into the industry. Now that the e-sports and video game space is rapidly evolving, it wouldn't be a surprise if there was an influx of people with MBA degrees entering the industry to work as business developers or product managers. The only challenge for these people is proving to gaming companies that they have a real passion for gaming. If they are able to demonstrate that, then they could use it as leverage to break into the industry and succeed. The world's most popular games come from the UK.
Rockstar North, a video game company whose roster of games include Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption, originated from Dundee, where its presence served as a catalyst for the indie community to thrive even further. More than 30 companies emerged in its wake, employing a total of 300 people. Studios based out of Leamington Spa in the West Midlands – including Codemasters and Ubisoft – have more than 900 people developing famous titles like Tom Clancy's The Division and F1. There may soon come a time where the UK gaming industry will be even more pivotal towards the growth of both the country's cultural landscape and the economy.
AUTHOR BIO: Jo Deans is a freelance writer specialising in covering gaming and finance. When she's not experimenting with an indie game or researching a story, she spends her free time baking and tending to her two dogs.