Barcelona is hosting the Gamelab video game fair
Gamelab is organised in Barcelona for the first time and it will take place in the Catalan capital at least until 2015. It is the video game fair of Spain, which is the sixth market in the world. The trade fair contributes to consolidate Barcelona as a technology capital.
Barcelona (ACN).- Gamelab is taking place from June 29th to July 1st in Barcelona, in Las Arenas, a former bullring recently turned into a shopping mall. Gamelab is the reference event for Spanish video game professionals and one of the most important of its sector in Europe. Spain is the sixth market in the world and the fourth in Europe in video game consumption and 23.2% of the Catalan population are video game users. Teenagers are the main gamers. The Gamelab fair moves from Gijón -in the northern Spanish region of Asturias- to Barcelona until 2015 thanks to an agreement between Gamelab, the Catalan Government, the Barcelona City Hall, and the Fira de Barcelona in order to promote the video game industry in Catalonia. In Catalonia, there are approximately 53 video game companies, basically developers, and they represent the 38% of the total video game firms in Spain.
Gamelab is very well considered because of the prestige of its speakers as well as for the quality of the discussed subjects. The Gamelab edition of 2011 will receive some of the most recognized international creators and developers, such as Hideo Kojima, Peter Molyneux and Cliff Bleszinski.
The fair also serves as an annual showcase for the Spanish video game production and is a meeting point for foreign markets, thanks to the presence of international investors, editors and distributors and the most important specialized media from Europe and the rest of the world. It also encourages cultural and social activities, like art exhibitions, and hosts the National Gamelab Awards of the Spanish Academy of the Arts and Interactive Sciences.
The video game sector is growing really fast, and its income already exceeds that of the cinema and music industries in both Spain and Europe. In Spain video game generate 57% of audiovisual leisure products, while cinema 25%, video/DVD 10% and music 8%.
During Gamelab\u2019s presentation, the fair director, Iván Fernández Lobo, highlighted that \u201CGamelab is one of the most important European events, and that chosen by the most important creators in the world to project their ideas and trends into Europe. Furthermore, it is a strategically located fair in the video gaming world as a neuralgic point towards the Spanish-speaking markets\u201D. The Catalan Minister for Culture, Ferran Mascarell, highlighted that \u201Cwe have supported an initiative that already has enough size, experience and savoir-faire to become, in a short period of time, a cultural reference in Barcelona and Catalonia, as well as at international level\u201D.