Choosing the legal status of your video game business will be an essential step in setting up your company. You will also need to put in place a business plan that will help you establish your financial plans and convince your future investors that your project is viable. You can benefit from aid from different organizations to start your video game business. The profession has no diploma requirement and you can get started without any contribution if you are alone with expertise in video game development. If you need advanced equipment and personnel, you will need a personal contribution or a professional loan to support the beginnings of the activity. Find out how to set up your business, the article details the different stages of business creation.
Table of Contents
What legal status should I choose when creating my video game business? The statutes of micro enterprise are possible: auto enterprise or EIRL (Individual Enterprise with Limited Liability) which separates personal and professional heritage. The status of auto entrepreneur is simple and easy to manage in the context of your future activity, but this status is to be carefully considered before embarking on your activity, the type of profits and the type of taxation chosen or not.
An LLC created by a single person is a EURL: One-Person Company with Limited Liability, with a single partner. A EURL is a real business imposed on the so-called “real” tax system: you will pay charges even if you do not make a profit. The managing partner is a self-employed worker, his remuneration is less subject to social security contributions than the other statutes of directors.
If you are several partners, the SAS can be a good choice because the statutes are freely written and can be supplemented by a shareholders’ pact which fixes the operation of the company, the rights and duties of each one in order to work in the best possible conditions.
Create a Business Plan
As a business creator it is essential to write your creation project and carry out a business plan for:
- Clarify your ideas, format your market research and structure the financial part of your project
- Present your business creation project to business creation assistance associations (to obtain financial aid or the assistance of volunteers)
- Request funding from partners or a bank.
This business plan is essential to fix the commercial strategy of the company and draw up its forecast financial statements. These estimates will be the way for you to verify that you can be well remunerated from the start of your business and above all to ensure that you will have the financing capacity to face debts (for example loan repayments)
What costs when opening a video game business?
When setting up your 파워볼 game business, it will be important to take the following expenses into account in your budget:
- Compensation of the creators of your video games
- Staff costs
- Operating expenses: supplies and materials, rent, travel and traveling expenses, technical documentation and postage
- Subcontracting expenses
Help to open your video game business?
By far the most common partner for independent developers. Pôle Emploi has several mechanisms concerning business creators. You should first of all know that depending on your projects and your situation, you are not considered in the same way with Pôle Emploi, which is why don’t hesitate to specify what kind of project you want to develop.
Aid from URSSAF
As an unemployed creator or business owner, you can claim the ACCRE which is a partial and decreasing exemption from social security contributions concerning you over several months. This is an undeniable advantage because you will pay very few charges in the first quarter. The request is made at the same time as the filing of your company’s articles of association.
Certain regions or local institutions are made aware of the problem of digital creation and offer assistance. For example, the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, through the “Magelis” image center, can subsidize a video game company up to € 30,000.
Do not hesitate to make yourself known in local professional networks and to get in touch with official institutions (town halls, regional councils, etc.) to keep abreast of the structures that exist around digital creation. Many regions are moving in this direction by setting up image or digital centers, with incubators, fablabs, etc.
Tax credit from the CNC (National Center for Cinema and the Animated Image)
Since 2008, video game creation companies subject to corporate tax can benefit from a tax credit on part of the expenses made for game creation. In order to benefit from the tax credit, the video game must meet the following 4 criteria:
- Have a development cost greater than or equal to 100,000 €.
- Be intended for effective marketing to the public.
- Be produced mainly by authors and collaborators of French nationality, from another member state of the European Union or another member state of the European Economic Area having concluded an administrative assistance agreement with France.
Open a video game business without any input
Starting a video game business with no input is possible as long as you can borrow money or hire outside investors. Most commercial companies do not require a minimum share capital, which means that you can start a business with just € 1. If you have the development skills and the hardware to develop a video game on your own, you won’t need a large upfront investment. If you need staff: developers, screenwriters, salespeople … you will need initial funding to pay them and support the first months of activity knowing that the creation phase can be long.
Please note: a bank hardly grants credit to a company with a share capital of € 1. This capital being your starting cash, the company will quickly find itself in the red and will go bankrupt without external financial contribution.
Can you open a video game business without a diploma?
It is possible to create a video game company without diplomas in the field of computer science or graphics. The banks do not check if you are a graduate but they will study your entrepreneurial capacity, they will study the potential of your company and your capacity to manage your finances. Knowing the world of video games is not enough, you also need to know how to manage your professional accounts. Before you start, approach the chamber of commerce and industry.
The specifics of the activity
Regarding the specificity of video games:
- You will have to frame the transfer of copyright if necessary and settle all points’ related to intellectual property.
- You will have to integrate into your CGV (Certificate of Guaranteed Value) if necessary a license agreement of use of the games.
- You will have to frame the sale itself, either on your own website with adequate General Conditions of Sale, or via the contract concluded with the providers who will host the games for sale and distribute the rights and obligations of each party (here, Apple and Google Play, in other words giants, with which the conditions will not necessarily be advantageous for you, but may allow you to get started)
- Start a prior art search with the INPI (National Institute of Industrial Property) to verify that your idea or your future company name is not already used.