State Reps. Jeff Berger (D-Waterbury) and Carlo Leone (D-Stamford) cited the recent announcement of Blue Sky Studios decision to relocate to Greenwich as further proof that the state is prepared to become a major player in the media industry. Berger and Leone, the co-chairs of the “Film & Entertainment Workforce Development” committee (known as ‘Hollywood East’), also hailed the announcement for its major impact on the Connecticut economy.
“This is an extremely positive development spurred by our belief that Connecticut could become ‘Hollywood East,’” Rep. Berger said. “The legislation and tax credits are part of our overall vision for economic development in the state. As Co-Chair of the Commerce Committee, I have always believed that our investment in the entertainment industry would pay off in the form of job growth.”
The animation group plans to locate their operations in a 105,000 square foot, single floor in the Greenwich American Center. The move is poised to create 300 new jobs throughout the state. Additionally, thanks to the film-industry tax credits passed recently by the General Assembly, Blue Sky is eligible to receive up to 30 percent of their expenses exempted.
“It is truly wonderful to see the fruits of our labor are working by attracting a world-class entity such as ‘Blue Sky’ to reside in Connecticut,” said Rep. Leone. “This move is going to provide new jobs in state, as well as pump revenue into the economy.”
According to Brian Keane, Blue Sky COO / CFO, the opportunity to re-establish the studio and crew of approximately 300 employees on one contiguous floor, combined with what is one of the most competitive tax programs in the country, made Connecticut the logical choice for Blue Sky Studios. Over the course of eight years, Blue Sky has expanded from one floor in its White Plains location to what is now three floors scattered throughout the building.
“We very much look forward to coming to Connecticut,” Keane said. “The state has taken the lead to create the necessary economic environment to make itself attractive to businesses like ours. Blue Sky expects to relocate all of its employees late in calendar 2008 after renovations have been completed.”