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Saturday, July 20, 2024

Lancashire-Based Game Art Studio, Airship, Receive Significant Investment

Good news for Lancashire

It is easy to think that there is only bad news out there, and it is all entirely gloom and doom. However, while the general economic outlook isn’t too rosy overall, there are some pockets of good news. Some of that good news emanates from Lytham St. Anne’s, where Airship Images Ltd has received a significant financial boost thanks to the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).

The power behind the big names

Airship Images Ltd has received £350,000 from NPIF-FW Capital Debt Finance which will be used to boost job creation in the company. The money will be used to recruit 11 new staff members over the next 12 months. This will bring the headcount to 26. The company offers end-to-end services for the big names in the gaming industry like Disney, Microsoft, Ubisoft and Supermassive Games.

Their technology is used to create animated characters, props and vehicles. While you may not have heard of Airship Images, you will undoubtedly be familiar with the titles that they work on. They have produced characters and weapons for Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order and familiar characters in Avengers and Avengers Black Panther. This type of technology is also deployed to create the exciting Avengers video slot games by companies like Playtech, whose games are available at reliable online casinos.

The success of creative industries

The creative industries are one of the UK’s success stories, and the sector has bounced back strongly following the Covid-19 lockdowns and restrictions. In fact, the video games sector actually grew during that period. According to the Creative Industries Council, the creative industries contributed around £104 billion in GVA to the UK economy in 2021. According to the DCMS, which includes digital, culture, sports and telecoms, the sector’s GVA grew by 1.4% from Q3 to Q4. In comparison, the overall economy for this period increased by 0.9%.

Airship Images are part of the success story of the UK’s creative industries. They are leaders in the research and development of new design and production techniques. Their ground-breaking innovation has helped to cement its reputation as one of the leading artwork studios for the gaming sector. The business was set up in 2008 by Joseph Harford, now CEO of the company. They were operating out of two offices in Blackpool but have recently relocated to one joint facility in Lytham St. Annes.

What Harford said about the news

When asked about the investment, Harford said,

“We work closely with studios to provide cutting-edge technical art solutions and aim to exceed expectations on each project, pushing visual quality above the competition even under technical limitations.

“Recruitment is vital to our growth strategy. We are working with major global gaming companies for some of the highest-profile projects. We are seeing increased demand for our work and needed a substantial investment so that we can attract the best talent to join our team.

“We’re really looking forward to the launch of the new PlayStation 5 and Xbox, which opens new graphical possibilities that enable artists to produce work at unprecedented levels of realism. Our R&D team have pushed creative and technical boundaries to develop innovative techniques which advance the characters and environments we can create on screen.

“It was important to us to find the right investor. FW Capital have a long track record of supporting businesses in the creative and digital sector, and we felt they really understood our business and the industry we work in. We’re really pleased to have them on board.”

Fifty businesses have benefitted so far

The great thing for Lancashire in this news is that the jobs being created are high-quality, which, in turn, can attract more high-value investment into the area.

Steve Fogg, Chair of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, said,

“To date, over 50 businesses in Lancashire has used this funding to turn innovative ideas into commercial value which supports economic growth in our county.  I hope this funding will act as a catalyst for Airship to continue to grow and provide highly skilled job opportunities for Lancashire.”

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

Sam Allcock
Sam Allcockhttps://businesslancashire.co.uk/
Sam Allcock is a highly regarded digital entrepreneur with over 20 years’ experience in online marketing for some of the World’s biggest brands. He has extensive knowledge and experience in SEO and digital marketing. He is based in Cheshire but has an interest in all things going on in the North West and enjoys contributing local news to the site.
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