Facebook, Microsoft & Co: Tech Giants bet on Barcelona
Over the last years Barcelona has been gearing up for a tech revolution and it has become a European hotspot for entrepreneural creation, startups, and innovation.
Not only is it a mekka for startups. Recently, a number tech giants opted to open branch offices as well as retail and experience stores in this vibrant city. And as the trend shows, there is still more to expect.
In fall 2017 Amazon opened a new logistics center in Barcelona and anounced that it will generate over 1,500 jobs within the first three years. Amazon’s new 60.000 m2 infrastructure is conveniently located in El Prat de Llobregat, close to the business sectors of the Llobregat delta, Barcelona’s main airport and the commercial port.
The location was strategically chosen thanks to the volume of sales registered in Spain, the presence of international business schools like ESADE and IESE, and because it represents a gateway to the South of Europe.
Amazon further opened their first European express delivery center on Roselló street in the city center.
The social media giant Facebook is setting out to open a branch office in Barcelona in 2018. Facebook chose the Torre Agbar (Glóries) to be the location for their internet content control center which aims to fight against fake news. Facebook reached an agreement over the renting of 9,000 m2 spanning eight floors, as announced by the real estate company Engel & Völkers. The Barcelona office will be staffed by around 500 Facebook employees.
The US computer giant Microsoft is planning to open a design center and quantum lab in the Catalan capital. The company is currently looking for premises and staff in Barcelona.
Microsoft already has an office in Barcelona (Diagonal Mar), hence, the quantum lab would become their second establishment.
Nestlé announced in a statement that it wil close its tech division in Switzerland laying off some 500 employees over the next 18 months. The company now plans to open a technology center in Esplugues de Llobregat (Barcelona) and with it, expand their Spanish head office which currently employs around 150 people.
On June 7 2018 the German tech giant Siemens opened a new digital innovation center in Cornellà de Llobregat (Barcelona). The center will develop solutions for Mindsphere, the company’s cloud platform, in the energy sector. The new ideas lab will carry out research into getting the most out of digital technology applied to energy and maximizing the efficiency of plants and factories.
The North American mobile games publisher announced in October 2017 that it will be expanding operations with their first international office in Barcelona with the intention of converting it into the company’s European hub. Scopely Games Barcelona is located close to Plaza Catalunya and they are currently recruiting.
Scopely has more than 125 million players and a catalogue of successful games in its portfolio, including Walking Dead: Road to Survival and Temple Run: Treasure Hunters. The Walking Dead title alone has over 40 million players.
This major Argentinian business is a leader in microsatelite technology for high-resolution images. Satellogic has chosen Barcelona to set up its central offices in Europe. Satellogic Barcelona opened in May 2018 and will create 100 jobs within the next 2 years.
The Asian giant IGG, a world-scale developer of video games, also opted for Barcelona to establish its European headquarters, from which it serves Spain, France, Italy, the United Kingdom and Germany. The company opened their office in Barcelona at the beginning of 2018 and expects to have a team of 60 people by the end of 2018.
On the last day of the Mobile World Congress 2018 Huawei seized the occasion to accounce the opening of an experience store and customer service center in Barcelona. The store is located in the city center (Roselló 262) and focuses on IT services and consulting.