Kre8tif! 2020, now in its 11th year, reinforced its reputation as the definitive business networking platform for the digital content industry in Malaysia and across Southeast Asia – registering some 10,000 views across four days. An initiative by the Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), the virtual-format event due to the COVID-19, did little to stem the enthusiasm of the participants and speakers that have come together.
All in all, Kre8tif! 2020 generated new and extended economic opportunities in an increasingly digitalised world as it became the focal point for over 1,200 daily business networking participants, of which 200 are registered as global brands and platforms.
This comes off the back on the growing enthusiasm for the local creative industry and the content it is producing. Take for example, the three biggest Malaysian animated films that came out last year – Ejen Ali The Movie, Boboiboy 2 and Upin & Ipin: Keris Siamang Tunggal – with their combined box office collection totalling a cool US$20.7 million (RM85.8 million). The three animations represent 63.6% of the Malaysia’s domestic box office for 2019 and, when shown on global silver screens, has put the nation on the global map as a sought-after destination for digital content creation.
The event opened with the Kre8tif! Conference, where over 14 experts shared industry insights, technical know-how and discussed future-shaping trends. Paired to that is the Kre8tif! Business Xchange, a signature satellite event, featured 24 pitched projects and 800 scheduled meetings for matching sessions. As for the exhibition, caled the Kre8tif! Xhibition, it hosted almost 50 virtual exhibits from creative and technology companies showcasing that their current and upcoming intellectual properties and digital content and production services.
Surina Shukri, CEO, MDEC, shared how this year’s virtual edition of Kre8tif! offered local digital content creators and animators a wider pool of experts to reach out and collaborate with compared to previous years.
“Understandably, the pandemic has forced us to think creatively when organising high-traffic events such as Kre8tif!. However, the online reach of a wider and diverse audience has certainly energised networking opportunities. As a result, not only with more participation from studio executives, animators and creative designers from all over the world, the event managed to extend its reach to include 18 partner sponsors and five partner events.”
“I was very encouraged by the stories and insights shared and know that this will inspire local content creators to follow in the footsteps of industry leaders and peers. More importantly, Malaysia’s award-winning animation portfolio has created an enviable baseline for the next generation of talents to follow and created more opportunities for them to achieve commercial success, ” she added.
The event this year featured global and local industry, stalwarts including the likes of Animonsta Studios, Cartoon Network, Les’ Copaque Production, Nickelodeon, Netflix, Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Animation Studios, and Weta Digital.
“Kre8tif! 2020 has attracted top talents from around the world, a recognition of both local talents in the creative industry and Malaysia’s rapidly growing global footprint. The events over the past few days have surely driven home the message that creating digital content does not revolve solely upon an individual or team’s creative and technical skills. Having access to world-class creative technology and a highly receptive and supportive business community is vital as well.,” added Hasnul Hadi Samsudin, Vice President, Digital Creative Content Division, MDEC.
While box office success demonstrates the appetite for local creative content, it is the global reach and accolades Malaysia received last year also boosted the digital content sector’s appeal. This includes nods from the Academy Awards, Asian Academy Creative Awards, Animation Game Industry Annual Conference & Anime Beijing Awards, Montreal International Animated Film Festival, and Laurus Film Festival.
Established in 2009, Kreatif!’s mandate to develop the digital content industry in Malaysia has been instrumental in driving a rapidly maturing digital creative industry which includes animations, movies, and video games. The sector has significantly shaped the country’s growing digital economy, creating 11,590 jobs, generating US$1.9 billion (MYR7.9 billion) in revenue as well as US$34 million (MYR1.42 billion) in export sales, in 2018.