Corporate News


Foreign animation studios keen to establish local units

Posted on March 21, 2012

THREE FOREIGN animation studios are looking to establish operations in the Philippines within the year, a property consultancy said last week.

“We are in talks with three companies looking to set up here in order to hire animators...They’re still putting up their work requirements, but it will probably range in the 200- to 300-employee capacity each, which is not small,” David T. Leechiu, country head of real estate services firm Jones Lang LaSalle Leechiu (JLLL) told BusinessWorld in a telephone interview last Friday.

While declining to identify the companies JLLL was talking with, Mr. Leechiu said these were all Western-based firms.

“One of them is really big, and by setting up shop here, that’s going to be good for all of us,” Mr. Leechiu said.

In terms of investment cost, he added that a single company is likely to spend around $3,000 for every worker they decide to employ in the country.

These companies will be engaging in business process outsourcing (BPO) and animation work, and they are currently requiring an aggregate total of 200,000 square meters in space, with choices mostly located in Makati City, Fort Bonifacio, and the UP-Ayala Land Technohub area in Quezon City, Mr. Leechiu noted.

“These locations give them a whole new impression of the Philippines, unlike 15 years ago, when business districts were just primarily Makati and Ortigas Center. When they see all the new business districts, they’re shocked how the Philippines is really developed now,” Mr. Leechiu said.

This comes as the Business Processing Association of the Philippines, which represents the local BPO industry, forecast the BPO sector to grow by at least 20% in revenues this year after having reportedly grown by 22% to $11 billion in 2011, on the back of growth in the voice, health care, and back-office subsectors, according to earlier reports.

JLLL is likely to close one of the deals by the third quarter this year, Mr. Leechiu said.

A local animation industry group welcomed the development.

“This will be generating additional employment for the industry while at the same time strengthening our animation sector,” Marie Grace A. Dimaranan, president of the Animation Council of the Philippines, Inc. (ACPI), told BusinessWorld in a separate telephone interview yesterday.

At present, the local animation industry is comprised of 50 small and medium animation studios employing 5,000 Filipino animators, according to ACPI’s Web site.