At the end of October, the Game Developers Index 2022 report was presented by the Game Industry. It shows that the Swedish computer games industry has increased its turnover by a staggering 41 percent in 2021 – to SEK 58.9 billion. This represents an increase of more than SEK 24 billion. And the growing pains can also be felt at Boden Game Camp.
In 2021, the number of employees increased by 17%, which is an increase of 1,348 persons. Every fifth position in a gambling company in the country, 1,755, is held by a woman. This corresponds to a share of more than 22%.
For the first time in twelve years, the industry reports a negative result with a loss of 1.2 billion. The main reason is the expansion that has taken place with the acquisitions and investments made. During the year, 81 investments and acquisitions were reported, five of which had a business value in excess of one billion. Swedish companies were buyers in 77 of the cases and Swedish companies were sellers in 31 of the deals.
Swedish gaming companies are growing, employing 7,944 people locally in Sweden and 11,158 people abroad. The difficulties of the previous year remain. It is still a challenge to recruit staff in Sweden. As a result, an increasing proportion of Swedish companies’ expansion consists of establishing or acquiring development studios abroad.
Mattias Bergqvist is a business developer at Boden Business Park.
– The Swedish computer games industry continues to deliver success stories and is growing like never before. Looking at the challenges facing the sector, there is still a skills shortage. It has also traded and bought up a lot of companies and the industry itself has expanded and invested for the future. That’s why our investment and expansion to make Boden a talent factory still feels right. The more companies, the more developers we know will be needed.
Selma Knutsson is community manager at Boden Game Camp.
– Even here at a local level we have felt the growing pains. We have expanded from last year’s Boden Game Camp with 200 students to 300 this autumn. This has meant more housing, more facilities and more activities. From being located in the Workshop, part of the gaming activities moved to the premises located in the Factory.
Boden Game Camp was launched in 2017 and Boden Game Incubator was added in 2020. New for 2022 is the new initiative Boden Game Club.
– We are investing in added value and bringing together more cultural and creative industries. In the new space, we capture the community you come to. From the beginning it was just a few classes, today it is a culture of its own with several hundred students. Here we have an environment where you are close to the incubator, the companies and a place where new ideas are born and realised,” says Selma Knutsson.
The incubator provides a start-up company with a workspace, hardware, a mentor and marketing support for one year. Facilitators for this initiative are Boden municipality, Region Norrbotten, Sparbanken Nord and Längmanska företagarfonden.
There are 21 Swedish companies listed on the stock exchange in Sweden. Together they had a turnover of SEK 37 billion in 2021. The ten most profitable companies together paid more than 1.2 billion in corporation tax on their profits. The top ten employers have also paid a total of almost €2 billion in payroll taxes.