Media and IT

Hamburg Metropolitan Region – Media and IT

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The sector – Inspiring ideas

Few sectors are as closely dependent on urban centrality and functioning information networks as the media and information business. Hamburg Metropolitan Region offers great conditions and a scene that encourages innovation and inspired ideas.

More than 23,000 companies in media and IT employ almost 120,000 people. Apart from the traditional publishing houses and broadcasting establishments in the region, a new business community in entertainment software has developed, which is why the trade nicknames Hamburg “Game city”.

The latest trends in digital moving images have conquered the region too and the cluster "New TV" is pushing ahead with new products and market processes in IPTV, web TV, video on demand and mobile TV.

Focal points – From Hamburg Metropolitan Region out into the world

The Metropolitan Region is the home of publishing houses of tradition, creative advertising, is a game city, stronghold of the movie industry and centre of high-quality televised information and entertainment; in short, one of Europe’s leading media centres. More than 63,000 people work here in 14,906 businesses in advertising, PR, publishing, print and broadcast media, as well as music, film and television.

The Hamburg publishing houses Axel Springer, Gruner + Jahr and Heinrich Bauer have an almost 50 per share of German press and print media. The city offers media business a unique combination of advantages: a media landscape in which each sector is represented by numerous companies (something which is highly significant in view of the increasing convergence of media), a large community of competent service businesses, as well as well-educated and experienced skilled employees – a creative and innovative environment. 

The IT sector

The IT sector in Hamburg is about 8,500 strong, with some 46,000 employees, making up more than five per cent of companies in the city. These include manufacturers of equipment and components, as well as suppliers of data processing services, software or hardware consultancy, and multimedia or telecommunications companies.

The fastest proportional growth in recent years has been in the multimedia sector. Here the sector has grown since 2000 by more than 50 per cent to 2,483 companies. The most well known and largest Internet services companies in Hamburg Metropolitan Region include SinnerSchrader AG, Fittkau & Maaß Consulting GmbH as well as Nasa 3.0 GmbH. Major Internet providers, such as Hansenet Telekommunkation GmbH have also decided on this location.

Online marketing businesses are also part of the multimedia sector. Bauer Media KG, GmbH and Quality Channel GmbH represent the region regularly in important rankings. The field also includes such international players as Google Germany GmbH and Kelkoo Deutschland GmbH, which is the top European shopping search machine and became a wholly owned subsidiary of Yahoo! Inc. in 2004.

Production of PC games is a particularly growth-intensive segment of the multimedia sector. Additionally, there is the continuously increasing range of services for entertainment software with multiplayer solutions such as developed by Exit Games GmbH, a leader in its field, supplying demand world wide. The majority of games businesses in Germany today are already located in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region.

Some of the major international software companies are also represented here, including Adobe Systems Engineering GmbH, IBM Deutschland GmbH, Lufthansa Systems GmbH, Microsoft Business Solutions, SAP AG, Siemens AG and its IT-subsidiary Siemens Business Services, and Sun Microsystems GmbH. Software developers well-known throughout Europe include first and foremost CoreMedia AG and Gentleware AG.

Many software houses in the region have specialised and count amongst the leaders in their fields. Some examples of this are CABUS Computer-Systeme Hamburg GmbH which produces Navision-based solutions, Dakosy Datenkommunikationssystem AG in logistics, HanseCom Gesellschaft für Informations- und Kommunikationsdienstleistungen mbH in local transport, HS-Hamburger Software GmbH & Co. for standard accountancy PC programs, as well as Steinberg Media Technologies GmbH in music software. New business models and processes give the many software houses based in Hamburg Metropolitan Region optimistic prospects for the future.

Education, research & development – Cornucopia of knowledge

Hamburg Metropolitan Region is also a frontrunner in the knowledge and research area of the media and IT sector.

As well as Hamburg University, Hamburg-Harburg technical university, Hamburg university of applied sciences (HAW), Wedel university of applied sciences and Hamburg School of Business Administration (HSBA), sponsored by the Hamburg business community, private education institutions such as Macromedia GmbH, Hamburg Media School and the Funk&TV Akademie, opened in April 2008, offer the up and coming generation opportunities galore.

Knowledge transfer between university-level institutions and the business community is going ahead in many projects – some overlapping – in research areas such as “human/computer interaction”, “e-learning technologies” and “communications engineering”. The Hans Bredow institute at Hamburg University carries out research into the media sector.

Business development, networks – Metropolitan region at work

In addition to the broad palette of products and services, the IT location is characterised by a particularly widely diversified sectoral network that is admired nationwide. First and foremost worthy of mention is Hamburg@work, the Hamburg initiative for media, IT and telecommunications. It launches pilot projects, acts as an information platform, organises events and offers many expert groups and project teams on topics relevant to the sector.

Hamburg@work also organises partnerships and joint projects between different actors from business, academia and public authorities, including for instance Hamburg IT strategy sessions. For CeBIT 2008 in Hanover, Hamburg@work also organised the joint presence of university-level institutions from Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein and, for the first time, Mecklenburg-West Pomerania.

The Hamburg IT initiative Hamburg@work is also in close contact with the IT and media cluster management in Schleswig-Holstein, the Digital Wirtschaft Schleswig-Holstein (DiWiSH) e.V. association, which promotes synergy effects in IT business north of the Elbe.

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