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Hyderabad: IT Minister KT Rama Rao on Tuesday announced that the Innovation in Multimedia, Animation, Gaming and Entertainment (IMAGE) tower, taken up by the Telangana State, will be ready for inauguration in the first quarter of 2023. Speaking at the inaugural of IndiaJoy, an animation, visual effects and gaming industry event at HICC Tuesday, the Minister said the project, once operational will be a new signature landmark for the new media segments.

The construction works on the IMAGE tower was delayed due to the Covid pandemic but the State pulled back the pace and the project will be ready for launch in the first quarter of 2023, he said adding that the government will work with the industry to create more infrastructure to support future growth.

The animation sector will grow on the back of an active increase in the number of internet users, which is projected to touch about 90 crore by 2025. The sector has been growing at more than nine per cent and is expected to reach Rs 3 lakh crore ($44 billion) in value by 2024 with a compounded annual growth of 13.5 per cent, the Minister said.

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Hub in animation
Hyderabad and other cities in Telangana have shown continued success in the animation sphere. “Homegrown champion Chhota Bheem has been a noteworthy success. Telangana is one of the major contributors of visual effects (VFX) outsourcing to Hollywood and also to regional cinema markets. The comprehensive VFX ecosystem comprises more than 20 academies creating a world-class talent pool,” Rama Rao said.

An Israel-based company called Crazy Labs has partnered with Hyderabad-based Street Labs to work with multiple gaming studios and to build hyper-casual games. Hitwicket Superstars, a cricket strategy game, has bagged the top spot in the Atma Nirbhar gaming challenge aimed at identifying gaming apps that have the potential to be a leader in their respective segments, he explained.

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