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India in toon with Thai studio

Maya chooses country for its political stability, skilled creatives

BANGKOK — Indian animation company Maya Entertainment is looking to enter a joint venture to set up a toon studio and training facility for animators in Thailand.

Maya has hired local consultants Graffiti to negotiate with potential partners including GMM Grammy, Thailand’s biggest entertainment firm, and telcos True Corp. and Shin Corp.

Maya VP Naveen Gupta says the firm chose Thailand for its political stability, pool of skilled creatives and lower costs, which he figures makes producing animation in Thailand 30% cheaper than in Hong Kong or Australia.

The move also is seen as an attempt to cash in on the fast-growing animation industry in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.

Maya will own a 49% stake in the co-venture. It plans to invest up to $2 million to establish an animation school and $2.5 million to build a studio, both in Bangkok.

The school will offer courses of six months to 18 months and give students a chance to train at its head Indian office in Mumbai. It’s mulling launching branches of the school in Phuket and other provinces.

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