Smart Industry in Catalonia

Catalonia's smart industry sector is booming, with over 1,100 companies leading the charge. The industry employs 26,394 people, generating an impressive combined turnover of €5,564 million. 

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Catalonia's smart industry sector, a thriving & innovative industry.

Catalonia has firmly committed itself to the smart industry sector, with some 1,100 companies working in this field – a number that has tripled since 2017 – and employing a total workforce of 26,394 people.

With a combined turnover of €5,564 million, 42.6% of these companies have a turnover of more than one million euros, and 15.6% have a turnover of more than ten million euros.

The dynamism of Industry 4.0 here is also seen in the fact that 45.5% of the companies are less than ten years old, 28.5% are startups, and 31.3% are exporting companies.

Industry 4.0 Technologies in Catalonia

Most companies work in the following areas: cybersecurity, IoT, AI, Big Data, robotics, cloud, and additive manufacturing. While the Cybersecurity sub-sector alone comprises 361 companies, the companies with the highest turnover are those focused on the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence.

On the other hand, the sectors that most demand Industry 4.0 solutions in Catalonia today are the metallurgy and metal products sectors, followed by food and gourmet products and the logistics, e-commerce, and distribution sectors.

“Catalonia stands out as an industrial-rich environment surpassing Spain and Europe and attracts innovative leaders in various fields”

Dr. Ansgar Kriwet, Member of the Management Board of Sales at Festo

  • 1,100 companies

  • €5,564M turnover

  • 26,394 employees

Industry 4.0 support ecosystem in Catalonia

Support for the sector also comes from different local agents: different Catalan clusters such as the Health Tech cluster and Packaging cluster; local professional and business associations such as the Catalan industrial and telecommunications engineering associations, the General Council of Chambers of Commerce of Catalonia and AMEC, the association of industrialized companies; and finally local trade fairs and events such as the Mobile World Congress and Smart City Expo World Congress.

Foreign direct investment in Catalonia

In the period 2018-2019, the USA was the main investing country in the sector, followed by Germany, Argentina, and Switzerland.

Noteworthy recent investments are the new Barcelona center set up by the American company VMWARE, specializing in the development of corporate software and cloud infrastructure, which has created up to 250 jobs in Barcelona due to its growth strategy to promote technology talent in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

The Argentinean firm Satellogic, a leader in high-resolution microsatellite imaging technology, also opened its headquarters in Barcelona, choosing the Catalan capital mainly because of the excellent supply of talent in computer science and artificial intelligence.

And finally, the Swedish-Swiss company ABB, which focuses mainly on industrial automation, opened its first customer innovation center in Europe dedicated to robotics in Sant Quirze de Vallès, aimed at developing digital and automation technologies for companies.

Smart Industry in Catalonia

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Main players and events
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