As one of Europe’s leading ICT hubs, Catalonia offers everything the modern ICT firm could possibly need, and it is a a pole of attraction for foreign tech investments. Barcelona is considered the 4th tech city in the world (Nesta, 2017), the 4th most prepared city for the technological future (PwC, 2017), and the 5th European city in tech investment attraction (London & Partners and PitchBook, 2019).
The number of ICT companies has grown constantly: 4.5% in 2018 and showing a 27% growth rate since 2013. With 15,757 ICT companies in 2018, Catalonia holds a leading position within Spain (22.3%).
The sector has a €16,667M turnover (2016) and 106,400 employees (4th quarter, 2018), according to data from the Secretariat of Telecommunications, Cybersecurity and Digital Society.
An ICT industry attractive for foreign investors
From 2014 to 2018 the Catalan ICT Industry registered 167 FDI projects, a 96% growth compared to the previous five-year period (2009-2013). In the same period (2014-2018), Catalonia has also been the 5th region in terms of job creation within the sector in Western Europe.
Catalonia has been the leading ICT FDI destination in Spain, representing 42% of the FDI projects received, 23.4% of the capital investment, and 44.7% of the jobs created into the ICT sector in Spain (fDi Markets).
Technological and business opportunities in the ICT sector
- The Internet of Things (IoT)
Almost 20 centres focused on R&D in IoT and 103 IoT related companies.
- Big Data & Data Analytics
Talent, internationally recognized R&D centres, innovative ecosystem full of start-ups and first class companies.
- 3D Printing
Catalonia, the HP 3D Printing World Headquarters.
The government of Catalonia is ensuring digital security by creating public funded institutions.
- Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
Leading AI companies have productive sites and research centres in Catalonia.
Top robotics producers and research centres are located in Catalonia making the place a global benchmark.
SMART MOBILITY & SMART CITIES
- Connected Vehicle and Autonomous Driving
Massive Industrial & Engineering Ecosystem in the Automotive Industry. Blooming IT ecosystem. Optimal infrastructure and legal framework for vehicle testing, including automated driving tests in real environment
Catalonia hosts 1 of the only 10 drone airports in the world & an accelerator specialized in drone start-ups. We are becoming a worldwide reference in the field
Connectivity, efficient logistics and talent have made Catalonia a magnet for international companies targeting the South of Europe
- Smart Cities
Barcelona, 2nd Smart City in the world, after Singapore
STRATEGIC TECHNOLOGICAL OPPORTUNITIES
Important startups acquisitions, specialized videogames engineers, graphic designers and a creative environment
Thanks to our universities and engineers Catalonia is becoming a landing spot for Blockchain Tech
There are currently 22 companies in Catalonia developing 5G projects.
- Smart Materials & Breakthrough Technologies
Catalonia hosts an advanced material cluster with more than 30 members, and 700 nanotechnology and materials researchers making our economy rank highly in terms of pioneering thinking.
Barcelona, firmly on the global mobile map
From 2012 to 2023 Barcelona is the Mobile World Capital. This means that not only the international flagship mobile event is held yearly here, the GSMA Mobile World Congress, but also a whole range of activities and programs all year around are creating a dynamic professional ecosystem for the mobile and its satellite industries.
This initiative has transformed Barcelona into the permanent global centre for mobile technologies, representing the development of a business environment focused on this type of industry on an international level and making Barcelona a global benchmark for mobile transformation.
There are almost 1,000 Catalan Mobile Sector companies, most of them involved in App Development, ICT Services and Software Development and Distribution.