The guesswork around the performance of the industry in 2020 ends with the first ranking of language services providers by revenue. Nimdzi Insights just released data indicating that the revenues of the top 100 largest players in the industry actually grew by 6.8% from 2019 to 2020. “Despite the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the language services industry has once again proven to be resilient,” said Sarah Hickey, VP of Research at Nimdzi Insights.
This may come as a surprise, although the fast pace of growth common in recent years did slow down among some companies. “While growth among the top 100 positions might have slowed down, our data show that the language industry is still growing. In addition, we have found that for a majority of companies, profitability increased in 2020,” added Belén Agulló García, VP of Learning and co-author of the report.
The report is based on financial and organizational data as of the end of the 2020 fiscal year, which put TransPerfect at the top of the list, followed by Lionbridge, then LanguageLine in third position, SDL in fourth position, and RWS in fifth position. However, the landscape has already shifted due to mergers that were still incomplete at the end of 2020 — notably with the merger of SDL and RWS, which would put their merged company at the top of the 2021 market.
Nimdzi has released the ranking and some key industry data, and plans to publish the full market sizing and analysis later in March. Other highlights include:
- The revenues of the top 100 largest players in the industry grew by 6.8% from 2019 to 2020. From 2018 to 2019 this was 11.5%, so growth has slowed down, but there is still growth.
- As compared to 2019, the combined revenue in the top 10 positions grew by 9% in 2020.
- This year, the company listed on position 100 in our ranking has a confirmed revenue of $12.0 million. In 2019, this position was at $11.6 million and in 2018 the LSP listed on rank 100 had revenue of $10.3 million.