Animators in Jamaica and across the Caribbean are set to benefit from a project, which will create greater job opportunities by facilitating increased cooperation among them in leveraging their services and talents.
Dubbed, ‘the Caribbean Cooperation Business Model for Animation Studios Project’, the initiative seeks to improve the quality and number of animation contracts across the region, and assist animators to benefit from funding opportunities.
The project was officially launched on Friday (October 9), during the staging of a webinar for practitioners in the animation industry, hosted by Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO), in collaboration with the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
Speaking during the event, Lead Consultant for the project, Nneka Luke, said the project is relevant to the Caribbean in terms of the value of its creative and cultural industries, which have resources “that perhaps could be leveraged more effectively.”
“Animation is one part of the amazing content that we are able to produce and I really see this project as something that can bring together all of the different resources that we already have,” she said.
Ms. Luke argued that the Caribbean has undeniable talent within the cultural and creative industries, noting that the development of this business model for animation studios should hopefully move the animation industry a step further, “and allow for more content to be generated, not just local and regional content, but also for more contracts, more opportunities and more jobs to be brought into the region.”
She noted that the project, which has already started, will run for about 11 months, noting that in this initial phase – (September 2020 to November 2020) -“we are essentially establishing the foundation for it and then we go into the execution phase.”
This phase is expected to last from December 2020 to June 2021.
“Working alongside the partners in each country, in the initial phase…we are starting the desk research. We are going to see, based on what we find, how to envision what this tool is going to look like. This is a period of discovery in terms of figuring out what is this actually going to look like, how is it going to function. All of the work in this phase is going to inform that,” she noted.
During this preliminary period, the project will also produce an online database of regional animation companies and other related resources in the Caribbean, beginning initially with Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago, with the intent of expanding across the region.
“The database would be available not just to the regional interests, but also to international potential clients and this is something that would be maintained by the different partners across the region, and we are also going to be working on producing what is essentially an aggregate of regional incentives, trade agreements and other resources that can make outsourcing to the Caribbean and investing in our Intellectual Property (IP) more attractive,” Ms. Luke said.
She noted that the business model is to be completed during the execution phase of the project and a selection process developed for testing the model . “Once we have something that we think can work, we would want to have the companies that are actually doing this work test it out,” she said.
“We will be looking for companies to test the model out, using an agreed piece of IP in essentially a virtual incubator sort of approach and at the end of the project, we will publish the model for regional animation companies to use,” she informed.
The event was co-hosted by Senior Sales and Promotions Officer, Film, Animation, Music, JAMPRO, Tristan Alleyne, who, along with Ms. Luke, answered several pointed questions posed by animation industry stakeholders in attendance.
The project is being funded through a grant of US$100,000 from the CDB’s Creative Industries Investment Fund.