THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2017, KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is fast becoming a force to be reckoned with in the world’s video games and animation industry and to strengthen this position, Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) is spearheading a mission to Japan in conjunction with Tokyo Game Show 2017 in Chiba, Japan from 19 till 24 September 2017.
The Export Acceleration Mission (EAM) on Games Related Product and Services to Japan, is one of MATRADE’s initiatives to promote Malaysian game industry in Japan through partnership, collaboration and joint-venture. Fourteen Malaysian companies are taking part in this event and they are Gamehubs, Givemesix, Glow Production, Valkyrie Creative Solutions, Illusionist Production, Inspidea, Lemon Sky Animation, Magnus Games Studio, Mediasoft Entertainment, MOL Accessportal, Passion Republic, Soundtrec, Streamline Studios and Studio Kamii. The EAM is also organised in collaboration with Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC).
Tokyo Game Show is one of the most important events in video game industry and has proven to be a platform of choice for top Japan digital entertainment corporations such as Bandai and Sony to launch their latest products. Last year, MATRADE had led a similar mission to the event participated by 16 Malaysian companies. The participation in 2016 had generated RM81.3 million in sales.
Apart from Malaysia, other countries featured at the event are Taiwan, India and Indonesia. During the 6-day mission, MATRADE will be coordinating a series of pre-arranged business meetings for Malaysian companies with potential partners and collaborators from Japan. The companies will also be attending a business meeting with members of the Japanese Online Game Association (JOGA) and will be visiting Marvelous Inc. - one of Japan’s top independent digital content companies. To add value to the mission, Malaysian companies will be taking part in seminars on Japan's digital content industry as well as attending a networking session with Japan’s industry players.
The potential of the video games industry is immense. Based on the Global Games Market Report released by Newzoo, 2.2 billion gamers across the globe are expected to generate USD108.9 billion in games revenue this year, which is an increase of 7.8% from 2016. Revenues from games that are being digitally downloaded accounts for 87% of the global video game market valued at USD94.4 billion. This reflects opportunities for Malaysian companies to supply their services to the world. The video games segment is also one of the sectors within the creative industry, which is recognised as a key industry to drive the exports of Malaysian services by the National Export Council, chaired by Prime Minister YAB Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak.
According to MATRADE’s Trade Commissioner in Japan, Mr Shah Nizam Ahmad, “From our participation in Tokyo Game Show last year, some of the Malaysian participants have managed to secure agreements with Japan’s major digital entertainment corporations. We can’t disclosed the details of this agreements due to the Non-Disclosure Agreement they had signed. MATRADE thinks it is important for Malaysia to continue to be present at the event so the local companies can capture more market shares and this will help position Malaysia as a regional leader in the video game industry.”
Last year, Malaysian digital content industry recorded a revenue of RM7.6 billion where RM1.17 billion came from export, mainly on the outsourcing of video game and animation development. Malaysia’s domination in the Southeast Asia video games industry is further defined when some of the best-selling and well-known video game titles in recent years such as Final Fantasy XV, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, Bloodborne and Street Fighter 5 were partially developed by local game companies in Kuala Lumpur.
“Thanks to the strong support from the Government, Malaysian companies such as Lemon Sky Animation and Passion Republic have been recognised as one of the top game outsourcing developers. The promotion of the local companies has also in turn made Malaysia a hub for the world’s game development where Malaysian studios are chosen as a base for international companies,” said Mohd Shah Nizam. Two examples of such companies are Streamline Studios, founded in Netherlands that has relocated to Kuala Lumpur (now their global headquarter) and Codemasters, one of United Kingdom’s largest games companies.