Cost cutting boosts Canadian post houses

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OTTAWA -- Lower expenses helped Canadian postproduction houses record slightly higher profits in 2006, Statistics Canada said Wednesday.

The government statistics agency said that operating profits for the post industry rose to CAN$53.1 million ($51.8 million) in 2006, the most recent year surveyed, compared with CAN$48.6 million in 2005.

Canadian post houses depend largely on Los Angeles producers for business, particularly those that bring their projects here for foreign location shoots.

The profit increase came despite overall 2006 industry revenue that fell 1.9% compared with 2005, to CAN$822 million ($803 million), as Canada's postproduction industry cut its operating expenses by 2.6% to CAN$769 million.

Expenses were down largely because of a 10.6% decline in the cost of goods sold, Statscan reported.

About 6,119 people were employed in the postproduction industry in Canada in 2006, an increase of 37.9% from the previous year.

Statscan said almost half of postproduction industry revenue was earned from film printing and processing services in 2006, while 13.5% came from visual effects services, including animation.

Editing services accounted for 9.6% and audio postproduction services another 7.8%, according to the report, which gathered its figures from 353 postproduction houses countrywide.
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