Warner Bros. Games Montreal = Big cry baby
Well let’s say at least its president Martin Tremblay sounds like one. This is what his reaction looks like following the news the government of Quebec will have to cut some of the tax credits related to media.
In the past years Quebec has been very generous with the big players of the video game industry while giving none of the sugar to the smaller homegrown studios. In a recent article on La Presse (sorry, French only) Martin Tremblay says that the cut on tax credits will slow down the growth of the video game industry in Montreal. I’m sure it’s true but I can’t figure why my money should help a well established industry to grow instead of helping one to grow roots right here.
Sure, it creates well paid programming jobs but all the profits of the games created here are going outside the country. We are encouraging people to work for companies that don’t have their headquarters here instead of helping people to build their own business that would pay tax here.
From the same article Guillaume Provost from Compulsion Games seems to agree with me: “The best way to help the creation of business under Canadian control is to reduce the tax credits” (It’s an approximate translation here but the essence is there).
Jean-François Major also from Compulsion Games adds this: “Sure we are a bit upset about this but at the same we never profited from such measure”. Yeah you read right. A studio founded by people from here didn’t have access to the same tax cuts these big foreign studios had. Way to go to kill the entrepreneurial spirit in Quebec …
Creating jobs that can disappear in a week is a bad strategy for economic health. These big studio couldn’t care less about Quebec they are just here because we are just cheap labor. Sure, for a time it can be good but at some point you have to make the transition to helping homegrown business that will pay tax here and are less likely to move away.
We don’t need more programming jobs we need more businesses built by people from Quebec. Need proof? Well that comment from that big cry baby from Warner Bros. Games should be proof enough. He doesn’t care about Quebec, he cares about the tax credits. If one day the profits are better elsewhere they will move out right away.
The big studios played a role for a time but it’s time for a change. The bad thing here is that now that the economic situation is bad we won’t be helping small studios like we helped these big foreign ones. A missed opportunity.
Helping the creation of jobs might be easier but what really is important is helping the creation of businesses. Now just wait a bit and I’m sure you’ll see Warner Bros. Games closing its office in Montreal and by that time we won’t have any measure left to help new game studios to be created. We’re already not helping them so …
So Warner Bros. Games and Martin Tremblay, shut up you big cry baby. Others with no help at all from the government are already having a harshest time than you and we’re keeping all of our profits here.