Index tie-up for animation academy

Index Holding has signed an agreement with a South Korean firm, Geonggi Digital Contents Agency (GDCA), to develop an academy that focuses on character, animation and digital content and to promote each other's activities in the UAE and South Korea.

Under the deal, the two will also work together to encourage South Korean innovators to take part in a marketing and licensing trade show, Character Dubai, which will take place in Dubai in October.

Byung-Heon Kim, President of GDCA, described the agreement as mutually beneficial. "GDCA shall promote Character Dubai among potential companies within Gyeonggi Province and provide the necessary support to the companies, who are intending to participate in the expo scheduled from October 28 to 30, 2008."

He added: "GDCA will also provide the required technical and educational support to Index in its endeavour to develop an academy specialised in character, animation and digital content."

Abdul Salam Al Madani, President of Index Holding, said the agreement signalled Dubai's growing importance as a commercial centre for the region.

"This MoU reflects the growing interest of Korean companies to tap the growing market of Dubai and the UAE in general. Supported by the government pro-business polices, stable economy and excellent infrastructure, particularly in the sector of communication and IT, Dubai succeeded in sustaining its competitive advantage as an international business hub for the entire Mena region."

Al Madani added that the expo will be a place for industry insiders to network and close deals.

"Character Dubai is the first and only dedicated show in the Middle East for marketing and licensing of cartoon characters, logos, films, brands, art and designs. The event will initiate and finalise licensing deals, secure potential leads and create general awareness about licensing procedures."