Event shines the spotlight on the creative digital sector

Event shines the spotlight on the creative digital sector

An event will be held this month to shine a spotlight on the North East’s creative digital sector, and the contribution it makes to the region’s economy.

Digital Union, powered by business support organisation, Generator, will bring together the region's creative entrepreneurs and members of the media to discuss the issues surrounding the industry at Wylam Brewery on Thursday 29 September.

The Shining the Spotlight strategy will begin at the launch with the release of a media pack of stories showcasing an exciting cross section of the North East's high-growth digital businesses to a panel of national and regional journalists, to demonstrate and discuss just how the industry can be recognised on a national stage.

Generator's CEO, Jim Mawdsley, explains: "When we took on Digital Union and talked to all the key businesses involved they felt that a lot of the great work the sector is doing was not making it into the media, and that many didn’t know where to start despite their passion for the region.

"We wanted to put this right, to shine a spotlight on the great work the businesses of the region’s creative digital sector is doing across the globe.

"We need to do something for ourselves to get away from the complete myth that the North is all about Manchester. This event will show why we are a sector with a significant economic point to make."

Generator – which oversees the Digital Union membership network and represents creative digital companies in the North East – recently announced a new ERDF-funded business support programme worth £1.7m supporting creative digital businesses in the North East LEP area over the next two years.

Over the last six years it has provided business support to the commercial creative industries, creating 98 new businesses, supporting 322 new and 249 existing firms – generating 225 new jobs since 2010.

The aim of its business support strategy is to grow the creative digital sector and improve on the current figure of £33,613.77 per individual GVA contribution to the UK economy currently achieved in the North East LEP area of Newcastle, Gateshead, Durham and Sunderland – a figure higher than the GVA per person of Greater Manchester.

Jim said: "We believe that the North East is a thriving, fiercely independent creative digital hotbed working with global clients on a ground-breaking portfolio of work.

"Make no bones about it, we believe digital is replacing manufacturing as the driving force of our regional economy and will only get bigger and more vital to the region's output year on year."