The Catalan ICT Industry is highly developed thanks to the presence of a strong consumer electronics sector, a highly competitive software development sector and the fact that it is one of the biggest industrial clusters in Europe. Investment opportunities arise in smart industry, smart mobility & smart cities, and several other areas.
The number of ICT companies has grown constantly in Catalonia: 5.5% in 2017 and showing a 21.5% growth rate since 2013. With 15,077 ICT companies in 2017, Catalonia holds a leading position within Spain (22%). The sector has a €15,914 M turnover (2015) and 115,600 employees (2017), with a growth of 10.7% compared to 2016. (Secretariat of Telecommunications, Cybersecurity and Digital Society).
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.
Connect to a leading ICT ecosystem
The ICT ecosystem in Catalonia includes well-known agents and companies within the entire value chain: Software Vendors, Hardware Vendors, Telecom equipment, E-commerce, Service Providers, and Services & Consulting. It also integrates Scientific Facilities & Technological Centers, Startups, Clusters, Fairs & Congresses, and Universities.
Discover an international open sector
Over the last decade Catalonia has been the principal ICT exporting region in Spain, and exports have represented 34.9% of Spanish ICT exports. The main exporting subsectors are manufacture of instruments & appliances for measuring, testing and navigation; watches and clocks (34.3%), manufacture of consumer electronics (31.8%), and manufacture of electronic components and boards (13.7%) (ICEX, INE).
Find specific talent in an ideal location
With 200 international destinations in 57 countries, Barcelona Airport is considered the Best Airport in Southern Europe. And with an excellent range of office spaces, Catalonia is always open for business, with the government’s business focused policies perfectly complementing and supporting a strong private sector. Talent from all over the world and availability of qualified multi-lingual personnel is reinforced by an outstanding academic support system with thousands of students in ICT and mobile-related studies at universities such as the UPC BarcelonaTech, ESADE or UPF.
An ICT industry attractive for foreign investors
From 2013 to 2017 the Catalan ICT Industry registered 105 FDI projects and €354.2 M in capital investment. With these figures, Catalonia has been the 5th region in terms of job creation and 10th in the number of FDI projects attracted into the ICT sector in Western Europe. Catalonia has been the leading ICT FDI destination in Spain, representing 42.5% of the FDI projects received, 39.6% of the capital investment, and 46.8% of the jobs created into the ICT sector in Spain (fDi Markets).
Connect to the right technology
With Eurecat Technology Centre of Catalonia or the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre, Catalonia is extremely well positioned to foster technology transfer and collaboration between academia, industry and public administration. It is also a leading Startup region in Europe, Catalonia concentrates more than 1,200 startups and is home to first class incubators and accelerators.
Business opportunities in the ICT sector
- Industry 4.0
Catalonia has the perfect mix: industrial ecosystem (21% of GVA) + Technology + Industry Labs
- The Internet of Things
Almost 20 centres focused on R&D in IoT.
- 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
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
5GBarcelona is turning Barcelona and Catalonia into a 5G / IoT European hub
- 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