[Advertorial] Barcelona lures visitors to Europe’s digital and technology capital – The Korea Herald

[Advertorial] Barcelona is among the most popular cities to live worldwide, and was recently ranked as best place in the world to visit by UK newspaper The Daily Telegraph. The city is also the first destination in the world to obtain Biosphere Platinum certification.
Barcelona is ramping up its promotion targeting global visitors after it recently became the permanent home of the Mobile World Congress. The world’s largest mobile tech event has been held in Barcelona every year since 2006. According to GSMA, the MWC’s organizer, a new deal was agreed with the city and other relevant authorities in June this year for the event be held in Barcelona until at least 2030.
Barcelona has become one of Europe’s entrepreneurship and digital hubs, regarded by many as Southern Europe’s Silicon Valley. The city was ranked first in Europe for its strategy for attracting foreign investment, it is the European city with the highest number of technology hiring, as stated in a 2021 study by CBRE, and it is rated the third best European city for founding a start-up.
The Catalan start-up ecosystem has grown 75 percent since 2016 and, in 2020, more than 18 percent of European entrepreneurs chose Barcelona to establish their ventures. These companies employ over 19,300 people with a joint turnover of 1.71 billion euros ($1.7 billion).
There are more than 1,900 start-ups in Barcelona, many of which were launched in the city including Glovo or Wallbox. The city has also been the backdrop for the launch of other potential unicorns like Redpoints or HolaLuz. In five years, The Collider, Mobile World Capital Barcelona’s innovation program, has helped launch nearly 20 health, energy and industry 4.0 S&T start-ups and, since 2021, has also supported foodtech and new materials (Puzzle X) ventures.
A unique digital network has been fostered thanks to Barcelona’s position as host to some of the world’s best-known technology events, including the Mobile World Congress, Integrated Systems Europe, and Smart City Expo World Congress, as well as other international events like the America’s Cup Sailing 2024, which will contribute to the development of Barcelona’s blue economy.
The city is also at the center of many impactful projects such as the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, housing Southern Europe’s first quantum computer and future home of the next-generation European chip. Barcelona has also seen the launch of pioneering projects like MWCapital’s Intelligent Connectivity, and the 5G Barcelona initiative, the driving force of over 25 5G pilot projects, making Barcelona Southern Europe’s 5G hub.
According to the Digital Talent Overview 2022 report, 10,500 new digital professionals joined the Catalan labor market in 2021, reaching almost 100,000 international profiles in the region. In Barcelona, 31.4 percent of digital profiles are international, a figure 50 percent higher than in 2020.
Barcelona aims to continue leading Europe’s digital revolution but aims do so from a humanistic perspective. The city will continue to encourage developments in innovation and the digital economy with people’s wellbeing at the center, using technology at a human scale.
The Barcelona City Council has opened the International Welcome Desk, a “one-stop shop” to facilitate the arrival of international talent helping them with registration with local authorities, enrolling children in school, and finding a home.
Additionally, the new start-up law recently approved by the Spanish government is introducing an important range of fiscal advantages for international professionals and companies willing to move to Spain as well easier access to visas and residence permits for entrepreneurs and investors.

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