With industry representing 21% of Catalonia’s GDP and a powerful existing ICT sector featuring 15,000 companies with a collective annual turnover of some 16,000 million euros, the future for Smart Industry and 3D printing is bright in Catalonia, where opportunities for innovation, internationalisation and foreign investment can all be found.
The main applications of the most developed Industry 4.0 technologies in Catalonia include design and personalization, prototyping, manufacturing and assembly, verification, maintenance, and marketing. Furthermore, the sectors that have made the most progress in the digitization process are the automotive industry, medical technologies, and machinery and equipment.
A total of 2,701 companies work in the food industries in Catalonia, representing 11.9% of global industrial companies in the region. Turnover accounts for €26,000M and the number of jobs represents 18% of total industrial workers in Catalonia. Catalonia’s food and drink industry exports represent almost one-third of the total exports of the sector in Spain, as well as 11.3% over total Catalan exports.
Catalonia has a rich, diverse Industry 4.0 ecosystem
The map of agents in Catalonia include knowledge providers, clusters and associations, training programmes and institutions, as well as fairs and international entities. It also includes solution providers (production resources, data, and connectivity solutions and intelligence tools), distributors and integrating agents such as installers, engineering firms, and consultancies.
End-users include companies from a wide range of sectors, from the automotive and motorcycle industry, the pharmaceutical industry to logistics, e-commerce and distribution, to mention only a few. Different organizations promote Industry 4.0 in Catalonia, including the 21 technological centres in the TECNIO network, and important trade fairs such as the IoT Congress and the Advanced Factories Expo.
3D printing in Catalonia
Catalonia is home to some global leaders in the deployment of new 3D Printing technologies and this represents a differentiating factor. One of them is American company HP, that has located its worldwide headquarters for 3D and Large Format printing business in Sant Cugat (Barcelona). The 3D Printing sector in Catalonia is firmly established and dynamic, composed of both consolidated firms and young start-ups. It is also an internationalised sector with 6.78% of companies having subsidiaries abroad and 34.75% exporting.
The Catalan 3D ecosystem can be divided into four main platforms: facilitators promoting the industry, such as Catalonia Trade & Investment, distributors which include all the main firms producing the technology, the clusters supporting the industry, and the training and consultancy platforms that keep it constantly up to date.