The creation of professionals as well as animated and interactive entertainment products for the Gen-next is a mission of AAG (Academy of Animation & Gaming).A tête-à-tête with Vikas Tomar, COO, AAG shares the origin and future plans of his company.
Abha Garyali (AG): Tell us something about the inception and success of ‘AAG’.
Vikas Tomar (VT): AAG, Academy of Animation & Gaming was established in 2007. A leader in creative arts education, AAG offers advance courses of Animation and Gaming and several academic degree programmes. The quality of our classes and faculty sets us apart. Our faculties are creative professionals and provide real-world education necessary in today’s competitive job market.
AG: What is the USP of AAG? How is it different from other animation schools?
VT: The academy is functional within a carpet area of 25000 sq. ft in Noida and Gurgaon and has more than 700 students in less than three years time span. Our team of interactive media content creation, managing techno-creative teams and VFx course from Vancouver Film School gives international flavour to our offered courses. The academy has secured affiliation/ accreditation for its courses from the following university/ institution-
AG: Recently, we have seen that the animation and gaming sector has caught up speed in India. What are the reasons for this development?
VT: India’s IT expertise and creative skills, combined with the entrepreneurial spirit has driven the potential of this growing global industry. Secondly, India offers significant cost advantage in animation and game development, as compared to other outsourcing destinations such as Taiwan and South Korea. The only factor restricting the growth of animation and gaming in India is the scarcity of skilled professionals.
AG: When did the company start franchising? From where did you get the inspiration to opt for franchising as a mode of expansion?
VT: We started franchising in 2008. Considering the growth of animation industry, we planned to launch a dozen more franchisees in the near future. The success of ‘Avatar’ inspired us to spread the centres, as it gave franchisee the comfort to market the future of animation.
AG: What are the qualities and the criteria for the selection of your prospective franchisees?
VT: We are looking at entrepreneurs who have:
AG: How many franchisees do you have and in which cities in India?
VT: We have recently launched franchise model for pan-India expansion. Presently, we have franchisees in South Ex., Peetam Pura, Preet Vihar (New Delhi), Lucknow, (UP) and Bhopal (MP). We also have acquired major stakes in Wiz-toon with Six Centres in Bengaluru.
AG: In what ways do you support and train your franchisees?
VT: We provide following support and training to our franchisees in terms of:
AG: How much investment is required by an aspiring franchisee?
VT: A prospective franchisee has to invest a minimum of 50 lakh and other operational expenses.
AG: What are your future plans in terms of expansion through franchising?
VT: We have eight centres including Kamla Nagar, (New Delhi), Hyderabad (AP), Gorakhpur, Agra (UP), Jaipur (Raj) under progress. Apart from this, we also have plans to open a dozen of franchised centres in the near future.