Area Development
Redwood, California-based video game company Electronic Arts (EA) has announced it is expanding its Austin, Texas, operations and creating 150 full-time jobs and 150 contract positions.

EA is a leading global interactive entertainment software company with over 8,000 global employees. Its software is used for video games, personal computers, wireless devices and the Internet. BioWareTM (an EA division) started BioWare/Austin in 2005 with only eight employees. Since then, BioWare and other EA operations in Austin have grown to employ over 450 workers.

According to EA Games President Frank Gibeau, Texas has been an important creative center for the company's growth as a global leader in technology and entertainment. "We are continually searching for the best talent in the industry and the best locations for our operations. Gov. Perry's leadership in passing the Texas Moving Image Production Incentive has created an economic environment that is very supportive of game development. Texas is a great place to make games; that's why EA is expanding here."

The Texas Moving Image Industry Incentive Program offers qualifying companies the opportunity to receive a payment of 5 to 15 percent of eligible Texas spending upon completion of a review of their Texas expenditures. Both live-action and animated projects are eligible.

Texas ranked second nationally in computer and video game employees in 2009, with more than 13,600 individuals directly and indirectly employed by the industry. Additionally, Texas ranked third in the number of schools (21) offering video game design and development programs in the 2010-2011 academic year.

Gov. Perry said Texas continue to attract innovative companies from around the nation due to its low taxes, reasonable and predictable regulatory climate, fair legal system and skilled workforce.