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Screen production companies

Screen production companies create work intended for final users, such as television stations, corporate customers, advertising agencies, and distributors.

Information is for the 2008 financial year, and for the 2008 financial year compared with the 2007 financial year unless otherwise stated. 

  • 555 screen production companies earned revenue of $932 million in 2008. 
  • Just over half of screen production companies’ revenue was from feature films and a further 31 percent was from television programmes. 
  • More than half (58 percent) of screen production companies’ revenue was from overseas. Of international revenue, 89 percent was from the United States.

Businesses are asked to indicate which regions they have been active in over the last 12 months. Businesses may be active in more than one region in any given year, and some businesses may earn revenue but may not have activity in that year. 

  • In 2008, 381 screen production companies (74 percent) were active in the Auckland area. 
  • Just under half (45 percent) of screen production companies were active in the Wellington region.

 Gross revenue received by screen production companies, by subsector


  • Funding received by screen production companies was $644 million in 2008, a 59 percent increase from 2007. 
  • Most of the increase in funding came from overseas funding, which more than doubled. 
  • The main contributor internationally was the United States, accounting for 92 percent of international funding, and over half of all domestic and international funding. 
  • Of the $276 million in domestic funding, 81 percent came from government sources. 
  • The main contributors to government funding according to survey results were NZ On Air ($68 million) and New Zealand publicly-owned broadcasters ($58 million).

Note: Funding from publicly-owned broadcasters was previously included in general broadcasters, which is a private source of funding.

Expenditure by screen production companies 

  • Expenditure by screen production companies was $875 million in 2008. 
  • Of total spending, $357 million was spent on producing television programmes, up from $301 million in 2007.

Note: Before 2008, expenditure on feature films included spending on short films. From 2008 short films is included in ‘other’. 

  • $346 million was spent on feature films, 45 percent more than the combined $238 million spent on feature films and short films in 2007. 
  • Total expenditure increased 30 percent, with most of the increase attributable to the Wellington region. 
  • Expenditure in Wellington more than doubled, up from $128 million to $285 million. 
  • Auckland continues to be the region where screen production companies spend the most money, accounting for $491 million of total expenditure.

Digital recording activity 

  • The number of screen production companies who used digital formats to record work increased, from 375 to 441. 
  • The number of screen production companies using analogue formats to record work fell, from 177 to 153.

Businesses were asked to indicate the percentage of their work that was recorded using digital formats. 

  • Of businesses who indicated they used digital formats, an average of 88 percent of their work was recorded using these formats. 
  • Since this survey was first run, the percentage of work recorded using digital formats has risen, from an average of 74 percent in 2005.

See tables 9–13, 16–23, 26, 30, 36, 38, and 43 under Available files for more information on screen production companies in the screen industry.

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