Recently Global Sourcing Association named Ukraine “Offshoring Destination of the Year” thanks to its abundant IT talent pool and positive IT market growth dynamics. The country’s IT industry now amounts to $2.5 billion and is expected to reach $10 billion by 2020. Around 86% of the Ukrainian IT workforce is concentrated in top 5 IT cities – Kyiv, Lviv, Kharkiv, Dnipro, and Odesa. Among them, Lviv holds a strong position as the most dynamic and the third biggest IT outsourcing destination in Ukraine.
The city provides remarkable capacities to staff enterprise-level projects and provide a wide range of technology-related services. It has been distinguished as the most digitized city in Ukraine thanks to the successful implementation of e-Government and an active role of local IT communities. In addition, over the past few years, the number of established European and US companies cooperating with Lviv software developers has increased dramatically. Here is a list of the most relevant facts and figures illustrating rapid growth and development of the city’s IT ecosystem.
20,000+ professionals work in IT in Lviv
One of the primary goals of companies looking for an IT outsourcing partner is to identify the location that will yield the maximum strategic benefits. Such IT outsourcing destination should combine a diverse talent pool, flexible cost structure, and a favorable business environment.
In this respect, Lviv offers ample opportunities to accomplish key business objectives and provide access to a greater pool of engineers. The city boasts more than 20,000 IT professionals making up for 15% of the Ukrainian IT resources. It concentrates over 250 IT companies and around 88,4% of them work according to an outsourcing business model.
Furthermore, around 107 new enterprises were established in Lviv with around 30 successful investment projects accomplished over the past 2 years. Thanks to the powerful inflow of new IT professionals, the city experiences constant growth and development of its IT and business sectors.
20% – projected annual growth of the IT market in Lviv
Lviv is a city with a huge IT potential and an ever-developing businesses environment. The Financial Times has named Lviv as one of the top ten cities of the future and one of the most attractive investment IT centers in Europe. According to Lviv IT Cluster Research, the industry development shows positive dynamics as the projected annual growth of IT sphere is 20%. What’s more, the size of the IT market has tripled over the last five years.
Many experts predict further improvement of Lviv business environment and the accelerated pace of IT development. For instance, 90% of IT-companies’ CEOs believe that Lviv is a favorable place for business, and more than 83% of them plan to continue investing in it. Furthermore, a significant number of Ukrainian IT specialists are moving to Lviv from other cities. This contributes to the growth and development of the city’s software development community as well.
Due to the active development of the IT community and business services sector, Lviv City Council named IT industry development as one of its key priorities. The city council developed a Complex Development Strategy, which aims to increase the competitiveness of the local economy and provide sustainable income to the city’s IT sector.
Additionally, Lviv IT cluster has recently launched a new project – Lviv IT Park, which will play the role of an innovation hub providing comfortable working conditions and networking opportunities for local IT experts. It will consist of 6 office buildings, 2 business centers, a hotel, a shopping mall, and a university. In the long run, Lviv IT Park will help to shape Lviv as a powerful IT outsourcing destination.
12,000+ IT students in Lviv
Lviv provides unlimited opportunities for those who are interested in developing their potential in IT sphere. For instance, more than 12,000 IT specialists are currently studying and approximately 4,100 of them graduate from educational establishments in Lviv every year. Around 10 technical colleges are located in the city including Technical College of Lviv Polytechnic National University, Information and Computing Technologies College as well as 7 higher technical educational establishments such as Lviv Ivan Franko National University, National University Lviv Polytechnic, etc. Also more than 40 research institutions in Lviv conduct regular research seminars for students covering a variety of technology and science-related topics.
Additionally, the city offers various specialized educational opportunities in IT where specialists may master trendy programming languages and upgrade their tech skills such as SoftServe IT Academy, CyberBionic Systematics, LITS, STEP Computer Academy, Computer Education & Training Centre LOGOS, MS in Technology Management (LvBS), Quality Assurance School SQA, etc.
Moreover, local IT communities have launched a number of educational initiatives such as IT Expert and IT Future to inspire students to connect their future with software development. In such way, Lviv developers have an opportunity to share their experience, inspire the new generations and take part in huge projects. These projects have already influenced more than 5000 students in 60+ schools and modernized the educational programs at Lviv universities.
2,500+ tech lovers attended a major IT event in Lviv
Thanks to the Association Agreement with the EU and a developed IT infrastructure, Lviv tech community is thriving. More than 100 event halls are located in the city enabling local organizations host various large-scale IT events.
One of the most anticipated events in Ukraine and the largest IT conference in Eastern Europe is Lviv IT Arena. This event gathered 97 outstanding speakers, 100 startups and more than 2500 IT devotees including top managers, business analysts, and developers from the biggest IT companies in 2017. Experts from such global companies as Pipedrive, Microsoft, Cambridge Analytica, TechCrunch, Airbnb, Deloitte, Hotjar, Hired, PwC, etc. were among featured speakers at the conference.
Another major event- Lviv Outsourcing Forum 2017- attracted more than 450 CEOs and top managers of major IT outsourcing companies from Ukraine, the USA, Germany, Israel, other countries of Europe and Arabian countries. At this event, 50 respected speakers discussed various topics related to outsourcing and its management.
What’s more, the city has a variety of tech communities such as Google developers group, Testers.Lviv.UA, PM Community, and WISC. However, the leading one is Lviv IT Cluster which networks more than 60 leading IT companies. The community together with universities and local authorities unites more than 7000 IT professionals aimed at improving and developing Lviv IT ecosystem.
Along with the development of local communities, Lviv developers organize and attend different meetups (IT Talk Lviv, Angular Meetup, Lviv DevOps Meetup, etc.) and hackathons (BEST Hackathon, AngelHack Lviv, Garage Mobile Lviv). At such events, they have a chance to network with other specialists, share experience, learn about new IT trends and strike up new acquaintances with their peers.
1,500+ hotels and 30 international air routes
Lviv is the biggest cultural, economic and scientific center of Western Ukraine with millions of foreigners visiting the city every year. It has a well-developed infrastructure encompassing 1,500 hotels and a wide range of restaurants and shopping malls. Lviv City Council has even launched a “Program of Lviv Tourism Development 2016 – 2022” which is aimed at developing local infrastructure and promoting it on the global scale. Additionally, it named IT Outsourcing, BPO, R&D, Tourism, Manufacturing, and Logistics its priority development areas.
Source: Lviv Land
Lviv has a favorable geographical location and a welcoming business climate. It is located within 60 km to the EU border, at the crossroads of the Europe – Central Asia – Middle East trade routes. Lviv has more than 30 international air routes, 5 highways of national importance and a variety of international transport corridors. Its international airport offers regular flights to major European, Asian and US cities. Thus it takes three hours to travel from Amsterdam to Lviv and approximately 8 hours from the US.
Moreover, the city concentrates a big number of co-working spaces, business centers and other facilities enabling companies network with their business partners. Additionally, more than 30 internationally recognized brands have opened their R&D facilities in Lviv. Therefore, local authorities and business influencers focus their efforts on developing local business infrastructure and accelerating the city’s future growth.
All in all, the positive IT market dynamics and the continuous growth of IT sector in Lviv make it an attractive Ukrainian IT outsourcing destination. A large pool of qualified IT professionals, numerous educational opportunities, large-scale tech events, and hackathons are some of driving forces behind the evolution of Lviv IT market. Along with a number of active communities and government initiatives that stimulate the development of city’s business and IT infrastructure. And much more is yet to come.