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North East company takes the videogame chart by storm

APRIL 12, 2007

A video games developer from the region is flying high in the UK charts.

Award-winning Eutechnyx has turned hit MTV show Pimp My Ride and Hollywood blockbuster The Fast and the Furious into videogames for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox 360 consoles.

Both are currently enjoying success in the UK Videogame Charts.

Brian Jobling, Managing Director of Gateshead-based Eutechnyx, said: "It's great that two of our products are doing so well in the national charts. And it's a double success in more ways than one because it is a real achievement for a company to have two products so high in the charts at the same time.

"The Fast and the Furious and Pimp My Ride were both developed for Californian publishers and have now been successful on both sides of the Atlantic.

"We are really pleased with the success the company is enjoying, and looking at the bigger picture, Eutechnyx, which is a member of both Codeworks Connect and Games Horizon, is helping put the region's videogames market further on the national and international map."

Eutechnyx was successful in securing a Selective Finance for Investment (SFI) grant from regional development agency One NorthEast in 2005. The funding assisted the expansion of their development studio in Gateshead, which is currently producing next generation games for the PlayStation 3, Microsoft Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii systems. The company is also looking to recruit additional permanent staff in the near future.

Andy Walton, eBusiness Manager at One NorthEast, said: "Eutechnyx is a successful videogames company with its roots firmly in the North East, so I'm delighted they are doing so well.

"You generally find that it's businesses from Japan and America that dominate the videogames market, so it's great that Eutechnyx can boast two games riding high in the UK charts.

"On top of that, Pimp My Ride is also enjoying success in the Australian Games Charts, so the company is really helping put itself and the North East on the international map."

To produce the Pimp my Ride game, Eutechnyx staff travelled to Los Angeles to work with rap star Xzibit, the star of the TV show, and its US publisher and producer.

Brian Jobling added: "We have an excellent staff at Eutechnyx who worked day and night to make these products a big success, and we are delighted that this has been reflected in the charts."

Eutechnyx employs over 80 staff at its studios in Gateshead, Hong Kong and mainland China.

CAPTION: The picture shows a still from the Pimp My Ride game.

For more information please contact: Leanne English, press office, One NorthEast, on Tel: (0191) 2296738, 07917 232678, or email:

Leanne.English@onenortheast.co.uk

Notes to editors:

1. Since 1999 the Agency has created/safeguarded 86,607jobs, helped 17, 029 business start-ups and established businesses with specific projects. It has also provided more than 25,821 learning opportunities last year alone. Aimed at adults who are economically active, these opportunities include workplace training courses, home learning and any programme of over 30 hours in length that can help an individual improve their job or career prospects and improve the contribution they make to their business.

2. During the financial year 2005/6 the Agency offered 23 firms £6.995million in Regional Selective Assistance funding - if the grant offers are accepted they will create 1,184 jobs and safeguard a further 640. The grants will encourage the firms to invest £56.833 million into their businesses. RSA Grants have been replaced by the DTI with a new investment product the SFI - Selective Finance for Investment. The new grant will target high productivity, highly skilled projects building on the existing RSA criteria of job creation and retention. During 2004/5 the Agency offered 96 firms £17.143 million in SFI funding - if the grant offers are accepted they will create 2,767 jobs and safeguard a further 1,572. The grants will encourage the firms to invest £27million into their businesses.

3. One NorthEast works to improve the conditions for businesses in order that they thrive in the region, grow and create jobs. Good transport links, access to the latest technology, research and development, well-trained staff and sound, simple business support are the key issues that affect the business climate - these are the issues that One NorthEast is charged with tackling.

4. One NorthEast is now the Region's strategic lead agency on: Urban and rural regeneration, Business support, Tourism, Research and Development, Skills and education and ICT and new technologies.

5. One NorthEast is leading the regional image campaign for North East England. The campaign harnesses the region's best assets to position North East England as a great place to do business, live, work, study and visit. Aiming to create strong and positive new perceptions about the North East regionally, nationally and internationally, the "Passionate People. Passionate Places" campaign features the very best the region has to offer through its people and the key areas of history and heritage, coast and countryside, city culture and innovative business. For more information please visit www.northeastengland.co.uk

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