Times are, of course, a-changing and in this rapidly developing digital age businesses are able to operate taking a very different approach to traditional models. But business acumen and understanding of terminology and practice is still as vital as ever should you wish to start up a company in the current environment. Running a Creative Company in the Digital Age is a welcome Creative Essential for those seeking to embark upon such an endeavour. Your helpful and informed companion on this business journey is Lucy Baxter, whose background understanding of all aspects of the industry is impressive. She is managing director of Mandrake Films and her own experiences in setting up a business inform much of the book. Also vital are the multitude of interviews and reflections from other people involved in this new industry as their advice and perspectives are fascinating to read.

Creativity is the aim and digital distribution is vehicle for the development of a modern company. In this context, the term ‘creativity’ covers the gamut of markets from gaming to film, television, advertising and everything in between. This includes professional fiction, documentary and news content but can also relate to more local ventures, anything from charitable to hobbyist to entrepreneurial art. There are a lot of issues you need to get to grips with and these aren’t just restricted to obvious factors such as pitching your ideas, getting funding and advertising your project to the world at large. You’ll need to learn about finances – keeping your books correct, getting a good accountant and understanding the requirements of the HMRC. You’ll need to understand shareholders (should you need them), the legal structure of a company, banks, premises, budgets, cashflow. From concept to inception to expansion everything is covered within these pages. Most importantly the book offers a substantial number of references to point you in the direction of further information. The useful appendices include all the necessary paperwork to get your internal set up arranged, with sample contracts and agreements ready for use. These resources are also available electronically on the website here.

Bang up to date, the book also addresses last year’s two major political events, the election of Donald Trump and Brexit, discussing the possibilities of future uncertainties, which is useful to anyone seeking to run their new business in changing times. For Brexit the book considers potential problems that might be forthcoming financially and in terms of visas, timing and paperwork as well as considering a plethora of other issues that could affect production and management issues, especially regarding creativity in media companies. Alternative perspectives are provided via interviews, so that those who were happy with the result and see it as advantageous are able to express the potential for opportunities; possible outcomes of these uncertainties are approached from all angles so as not to lack anticipation but also indicating the importance of keeping track of events.

If you have any serious interest in starting a business in the modern age then Running a Creative Company in the Digital Age is an essential purchase. And even if you are a consumer or are just toying with a concept, the book is a fascinating read which will place business matters into an understandable context.