IIDEA, the Italian Interactive Digital Entertainment Association, has released the fifth biennial census on Italy’s video game sector.

The overview is based on a study conducted online among Italian game development companies and freelancers from February 24 to April 1, 2021.

Here are some of the main takeaways from the study:

  • PC remains the preferred development platform (41%), followed by mobile (27%) but development for console is gaining share (22%).
  • The most common genres chosen by Italian studios are Action/Adventure (44%), Arcade (25%) and Puzzle game (21%).
  • Italian companies are showing signs of maturity, with 73% of development firms now operating in the market for more than four years. The number of firms with over €500,000 in annual turnover and over 20 employees is growing. A third of firms now fall under the definition of SME (10+ employees) and a fifth have more than 20 employees. In the 2018 census, 17% were businesses with 10+ employees and the remaining 83% were microenterprises.
  • There are now over 1600 professionals employed across around 160 studios in 2021. This is up from 1100 devs in 2018. 79% of employees are under 36 years old.
  • Italian devs see 94% of their revenue come from the international market, with the biggest market being Europe (60%), followed by North America (25%). Italy represents only 6% of the turnover of local operators.
  • The vast majority of respondents self-finance their projects (93% vs 88% 2018)The financial support from publishers has increased to 28% from 21% in 2018. 2021 is also seeing an increase in the use of public funding (24% vs. 6% in 2018) and banking institutions (18% vs. 6% in 2018). IIDEA tends to attribute this growth to the increased confidence in Italian studios.

The full study is available here.

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