Government of New Brunswick
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  • Overview

    The purpose of the Digital Media Development Program is to encourage growth in New Brunswick’s video game sector - an industry that employs a highly skilled workforce many of whom graduated from New Brunswick’s post-secondary institutions. The program will assist New Brunswick companies to develop Intellectual Property by providing an annual payroll rebate for eligible full-time positions.


    To be eligible:
    1. The company must develop game engines or games with either entertainment or serious gaming applications.
    2. The company must operate on a full-time year-round basis.
    3. The company must own the Intellectual Property being supported by this program.
    4. The company must be legally incorporated in the province of New Brunswick, with its head office and principal place of business in New Brunswick and its employees developing an eligible product in New Brunswick.
    5. The company can have neither annual gross revenues in excess of $20 million nor total assets in excess of $10 million during the preceding taxation year on an associated corporation basis as defined in the Federal Income Tax Act under section 256 (1).
    6. The company must demonstrate that it is not in a research stage, but is at an advanced stage of development and has demonstrated the potential for commercial application.

    Corporations that are prescribed labour-sponsored venture capital corporations under the regulations made under the Income Tax Act, and corporations that are exempt from tax or are controlled directly or indirectly by a corporation exempt from tax, are not eligible under this program.

    Eligible products include:
    - Game engines;
    - Games with entertainment or serious gaming applications.

    Ineligible products include:
    - Products developed by the company for internal use;
    - Interpersonal communications services, such as video conferencing, wireless telecommunications, a text-based channel, or a chat room;
    - Internet sites that are primarily static and primarily designed to provide information about one or more persons, businesses, companies, or firms;
    - Gambling or casino games;
    - Political advertising;
    - Products with a specific corporate, industrial or mainly promotional focus;
    - Products that use the internet or a mobile platform to distribute exclusively linear content such as video streaming or SMS text messaging without any other interactive feature;
    - Re-versioned or video material, presented without benefit of value-added interactive functionality which engages a response from the user.
    - Products that contain material that is obscene, that is harmful to minors or is prejudicial.


    Level and Type of Assistance

    The assistance is in the form of a non-repayable annual payroll rebate. The Digital Media Development Program will provide a 30% salary rebate up to a maximum of $15,000 per full-time employee per year. The rebate will be provided for production employees who are, for tax purposes, New Brunswick residents. This rebate will be limited to a maximum of $500,000 per company per year.

    Eligible salaries and wages do not include:
    - stock options;
    - amounts paid that are either based on profits or a bonus;
    - amounts paid to specified employees as defined in the Federal Income Tax Act under section (2.7);(NOTE: owners of companies with less than 6 employees may be exempt from this exclusion);
    - amounts paid to employees for performing marketing, human resources services, administrative support or management services;
    - amounts paid to contractors or sub-contractors;
    - amounts paid for ancillary benefits that are not required by law, such as medical and dental plans, retirement savings, bonuses, etc.

    Companies must complete a Digital Media Development Program application form annually. The application must include all attachments and information as requested.

    The most recent revenue levels of existing businesses must be less than $20 million annually and have total assets of less than $10 million.

    The recipient of Digital Media Development Program funding is not eligible for financial assistance from any other provincial program. Eligible payroll rebates will be reduced by any amount of government assistance received or receivable.

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