The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) and the City of Vancouver marked a productive first day of the Vancouver-China Business Mission 2013 as Vancouver-based Nerd Corps Entertainment, one of the largest animation studios in North America, confirmed a newly formed partnership with Ciwen Media Group, a leading Chinese production and distribution company. The two parties officially closed and announced this deal on November 4 in Beijing with the signing of an agreement after a full day of business-to-business meetings, investment panels and networking opportunities.
Through this deal, Ciwen will manage Nerd Corps’ latest boy’s action property Slugterra in Mainland China. The rights to this property include merchandise, consumer products, TV rights and non-exclusive digital media. The partnership will also see new content co-developed for the brand in 2014, including a 90-minute film slated for theatrical release in China, with deals in the works for North American and worldwide releases.
"Nerd Corps is a great example of Vancouver’s booming digital media sector, one that is seeing rapid growth in both jobs and investment,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “I’m excited to see Nerd Corps launch this new partnership with Ciwen Media Group and gain greater access to the Chinese market, and to do so as part of our Vancouver-China Business Mission. This deal is significant because it involves Vancouver-created content being marketed in China and signals the kind of successful partnership that is driving the growth of our digital media industry. Congrats to Nerd Corps on this exciting deal."
With only 34 foreign films imported into China every year, co-production allows studios to sidestep Chinese quota limitations and get a bigger share of box office revenue. China’s box office is likely to reach 50 billion yuan (USD $7.7 billion) over the next five years.
This partnership highlights the international demand and positive interest in Vancouver’s flourishing and diverse film and television industry, which continues to attract innovative and creative investment from foreign markets. Many of China’s “box office hits,” including Beijing Meets Seattle, Twilight and Mission Impossible 4, were filmed in Vancouver. For Chinese investors, the impressive resume of blockbusters generated by Vancouver’s film industry sets the stage for further success.
“We are thrilled to have been able to host the opportunity for Nerd Corps and Ciwen Media to connect to make this vision a reality,” said VEC CEO Ian McKay. “Nerd Corps is just one of the high-calibre companies from fast-growing Vancouver sectors that we have along with us on the Mission and we expect to have more to celebrate in the coming days.”
“The children’s animation market in China is growing rapidly, and we hope to grow as creators along with it,” said Ken Faier, El Presidente of Nerd Corps Entertainment. “This partnership with Ciwen offers us an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of Chinese storytelling traditions, evaluate children’s media consumption habits, explore new platforms for content distribution, and gain valuable insights for developing and co-developing new content to build truly global kids properties that also work on a local level. We see this as a true partnership with opportunities not only for Slugterra, but potentially future properties as well.”
The Vancouver-China Business Mission 2013 looks to connect Canadian and Chinese businesses in order to create partnerships that benefit both Vancouver and China with stops in Vancouver’s sister city Guangzhou, Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong from November 4-12, 2013.