Companies dedicated to AI in Catalonia triple in 5 years

Artificial intelligence sector generates almost €2.2bn and over 14,000 jobs

AI featured heavily at MWC 2024
AI featured heavily at MWC 2024 / Jordi Borràs
Catalan News

Catalan News | @catalannews | Barcelona

April 5, 2024 12:19 PM

April 5, 2024 02:53 PM

The number of companies dedicated to artificial intelligence in Catalonia has practically tripled in the last five years. 

This is one of the main conclusions of the Catalan government's study, 'Artificial Intelligence in Catalonia', carried out through Catalonia Trade & Investment (ACCIÓ) and presented on Friday. 

There are currently 488 companies specialized in AI, generating almost €2.2bn, up 60% compared to 2019, and creating 14,525 jobs

The figures show that AI "generates employment" rather than replacing jobs, according to Catalonia Trade & Investment CEO, Albert Castellanos.

Castellanos, who is also the business secretary, pointed out that the number of AI companies is second only to cybersecurity companies, of which there are 495 in Catalonia. Furthermore, almost half of AI companies, 44%, are start-ups. 

According to the report, AI makes up 0.8% of Catalan GDP, while Catalonia is the fifth highest ranked region in Europe for attracting international investment, with a total of €475m.  

"Barcelona has become the leading city in southern Europe in start-up financing rounds," Castellanos said. 


ACCIÓ's market intelligence manager, Imma Rodríguez, explained that using artificial intelligence in corporate and industrial processes allows companies to "reduce costs, be more efficient, and improve competitiveness." 

Rodríguez pointed out that artificial intelligence has a forecasted annual growth of 35.5% and is expected to have a global market value of $1.85 trillion in 2030. 

She also listed some challenges posed by AI, such as "increased consumption of resources like energy and water," and "changes in certain jobs." She also warned AI "can be used as a geopolitical weapon in an increasingly fragmented world." 

Mobile World Congress 

Artificial intelligence was one of the main themes of this year's Mobile World Congress, held in Barcelona in February. Listen to the podcast below to find out more.