Ryan Johnson worked in the TV commercial and infomercial business for years. After the recession and writer’s strike hit he decided he had to change paths. He ended up designing prop glass which ultimately became his props and special effects company, NewRuleFX. With the California film industry continuing to be the largest in the country, there was a great market for his business. California has very enticing tax credits that allow production companies a credit of 20% of qualified spending. And with the film industry doing less production in-house, there are many opportunities for small businesses to provide these services.
California’s entertainment industry employed almost 200,000 people in 2016. This has helped immensely with Johnson’s business. He also has a website that allows him to sell to an even broader audience. The key to Johnson’s business strategy is to cater to every single customer no matter the order size. He states that he will sell props to kids making YouTube videos just the same as a large company ordering thousands of dollars of products. This mentality has worked so far and he is committed to keeping it that way.
The increased film credits combined with a continuing thriving film industry in California has had a huge impact on the small businesses in the state. $43 billion is paid out to over 300,000 businesses in the US; 85% of those are small businesses. The favorable tax credits to film production companies also benefit small businesses with 34 states currently offering film tax incentives. Film tax incentives not only bring film production to the state of California, but in turn help small businesses like Ryan Johnson’s grow. This provides a substantial benefit to local economies and further opens the door for continued growth.