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Major movie effects outfit picks Seoul for studio

Apr 15,2019
Scanline VFX, a German special effects company, is opening a studio in Seoul.

It is especially well known for its fluid effects, such as those involving images of moving water, and has been involved in a wide range of Hollywood hits, including Captain Marvel, Iron Man and Aquaman.

Scanline VFX was founded in Munich in 1989 and has offices in cities around the world, including Los Angeles and Vancouver, Canada. The Seoul office is the company’s first in Asia.

According to the Seoul Metropolitan Government and the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (Kotra) on Sunday, they have succeeded in attracting four global corporate investors including Scanline VFX.

The others are: Platinum21 Capital, a Vancouver-based biopharmaceutical company; Finhaven, a Vancouver-based fintech company; and BuildBlock, a Silicon Valley blockchain P2P start-up.

These companies will be investing $110 million in Seoul over the next five years and creating 550 new jobs through 2023.

Scanline VFX will be opening its studio this year at the DMC Business-University Collaboration Research Center in Mapo District, western Seoul, the location of a cluster of broadcasting-related companies including JTBC and MBC.

Stephan Trojansky, Scanline VFX president, said while the company was looking into opening a studio in China and Japan, it was decided that the first studio in Asia would be in Korea with the support of the Seoul city government, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and Kotra.

Trojansky said the company will be investing $50 million through 2023.

Platinum21 Capital owns BioIQ Diagnostics, which has developed at-home health tests for HIV, syphilis and cancer. The company plans to set up a regional office in Seoul and invest $53 million while hiring 200 biopharmaceutical specialists.

Finhaven is opening an R&D center in Seoul with 30 or so employees and plans to invest $10 million.

BuildBlock plans to invest $1 million and cooperate with the Seoul government in implementing blockchain technologies in the capital.

BY LEE SANG-JAI, LEE HO-JEONG [lee.hojeong@joongang.co.kr]