New Zealand’s creative and digital industries

Screen production is part of New Zealand’s wider creative industries, which create knowledge, goods and services across fields ranging from television, film and music to design, fashion, publishing and digital content.

The screen industry is a significant contributor to the country’s economy and has had striking international successes. 

Internationally active television production companies include Auckland-based Oktobor Animation, which has built a global reputation by producing quality work for American children’s television, particularly for Nickelodeon Studios. 

South Pacific Television, also in Auckland, works with partners around the world to produce world-class television and film that tells New Zealand stories. 

Based in Dunedin, NHNZ is a global company producing ground-breaking factual programmes on natural history, medicine and science.

Technology industry

The wider technology industry is New Zealand’s third largest export earner after tourism and food and beverages, generating over NZ$7 billion in revenue annually. On the domestic front, ICT contributes nearly $20 billion to New Zealand’s economy. 

This success is due to a number of unique competitive advantages: New Zealand is an excellent test bed for new products and is both an early adopter of technologies and a world leader in applying technology to add value. New Zealand’s ICT solutions are popular around the world because they are practical and known for taking a fresh approach.

Game development

New Zealand has a flourishing game development sector.

In the last year, New Zealand game studios released 73 commercial video games which were primarily sold digitally on iPhones, websites and Android smart phones. The industry employs nearly 400 game developers and 99% of products are exported, mostly to the United States and Europe.

New Zealand developed game Flick Kick Football by PikPok reached No. 1 on the US iPhone free game charts and Major Mayhem by Rocket Jump reached No. 5. 

Digital content creators

Many outstanding digital content creators are trained in New Zealand. Media design schools attract students from more than 35 countries who are drawn to New Zealand by its reputation in high-end computer graphics and technical innovation.

From Auckland’s Media Design School, graduates go on to work in design, game development, film and animation studios around the world. 

In Wellington, Victoria University offers a computer graphics programme that covers a unique combination of the technical and visual innovation required by industry. 

There is on-going overseas investment in New Zealand’s digital and creative systems. The New Zealand Government actively encourages foreign investment and fosters an environment that enables international investors to relocate and/or collaborate with New Zealand companies.