The special effects and animation studio Cinesite has opened a new studio in Montreal.

The London-based company plans to created nine animated movies in the next four years, three of which are already underway.

Cinesite was founded in 1991 as a special effects off-shoot of Kodak, and has done work on many films including the Harry Potter series. In 2012 it was sold to a private company and last year it merged with Vancouver-based Image Engine.

On Monday Cinesite announced it is spending $90 million to create a new hub for animation and visual effects in Montreal.

The firm is also getting a $2.4 million loan from Investissement Quebec, which is also guaranteeing a loan of $19.6 million.

CEO Antony Hunt said he is glad for the government assistance.

"Yes private industry can do it, but it cannot do everything on its own," said Hunt.

"Investment allows us to come to this country with additional support to help us grow organically."

Cinesite's Montreal studio is at 250 St. Antoine St. West, and will expand to include room for 500 employees that will include not just animators and other creative personnel, but accountants, managers, and other staff needed to operate a company.