The Catalan video game sector continues to enjoy strong growth year after year. So much so that, in 2020, Catalonia accounted for 50% of the turnover and jobs generated in Spain.
On the one hand, turnover has grown from 319 million to 552 million euros in just five years (+73%). As for the number of workers, this stands at 3,966 people, a 17% increase over the previous year.
Furthermore, with 200 video game studios, Catalonia also is home to 46% of the total video game studios in Spain. This figure is 54% higher than that of 2016.
These figures were made known in the presentation of the Whitepaper on the Catalan Video Game Industry in Catalonia 2021, a deep look into the state of the sector prepared by the Catalan Government in collaboration with DEV, the Spanish Association of Video Game Production and Development Companies. At the same event, the Catalogue of Catalan Video Game Companies was presented too.
The Catalan sector has stood out in recent years for seeing large international studios such as King, Ubisoft, Smilegate, Tripledot Studios and Scopely open offices here. This trend has continued in recent months, as demonstrated by the opening of IO Interactive offices.
The entrance of foreign studies into local companies, as has been the case with My.Games and The Breach Studios, or the acquisition of other consolidated companies (Digital Legends by Activision Blizzard) is proof of the good health and reputation of Catalan video games abroad.
During the presentation of the study, the Minister of Business and Labour, Roger Torrent, highlighted that the government's challenge is "to promote the transformation of the Catalan production system, make it more sustainable and adapted to new realities, supporting the sectors with the greatest future potential, such as video games".
Torrent drew attention to the "progressive growth of the sector year after year". In this vein, he explained that there are currently 56 startups in Catalonia linked to the video game sector, representing a 43% increase over the last four years.
The Minister of Business and Labor assured that "training and attracting investments are the keys to strengthening the sector and consolidating ourselves as one of the most relevant European hubs in the field of video games".
Professional profiles in the video game sector
The rise in the number of workers has also seen a significant increase in the number of women in the Catalan video game sector, which in just one year has gone from 20% to 25%.
Regarding the different professional profiles, nearly 45% of workers perform art-related tasks, 28% are dedicated to business management, 21% to programming, and 7% to other work areas.
The professional video game sector in Catalonia is young and with a lot of future given that up to 91% of professionals are under 45 and 41% of the total amount of workers are under 30 years of age.
Furthermore, during the academic year 2020-2021, there were some 1,330 video game students enrolled in different universities within Catalonia.