Savannah is riding a Hollywood money-making wave. This year the money spent by entertainment crews in the Hostess City has surfed past what was earned all of 2017.
It’s no accident, the Savannah Economic Development Authority (SEDA) saw the opportunity a few years ago and capitalized on it. Now it’s paying off big, with more than a 300% boost over the past three years.
Hugh “Trip” Tollison, the Executive Director at Savannah Economic Development Authority says “When we saw that kind of massive increase after getting the film office under us, in our marketing and sales, its just get going and going and going and this year we’ve already topped last years numbers.”
So SEDA invested in manpower. Tollison says they have someone working in Los Angeles full-time that markets and sells Savannah as a destination for feature films and TV series.
“And we have an office that basically takes the companies or production assets and shows them the town, shows them the beaches, the region where they need for finding where they need to go,” he said.
Those focused efforts have paid off big even when other nearby coastal cities might try to compete.
According to Tollison, Georgia offers statewide tax breaks that business-minded producers desire.
“South Carolina doesn’t have that so you’re not going to see productions go to Hilton Head because they don’t have an incentive and on top of that, we have a local incentive,” Tollison explained.
Right now, there is an online survey called Propel to chime in ways to keep the Savannah economic forecast bright. It only takes a few minutes and you can do it until the end of the month.
Simply go to https://www.propelsavannah.com/survey/