Hiring activity in the language industry increased strongly in April 2021, continuing the upward trajectory from March and February 2021. In April 2021, the Slator Language Industry Job Index (LIJI) climbed by a little more than 10 points, the biggest upswing in more than 18 months.
The April 2021 LIJI grew to 132.66 from 122.49 in March 2021. The index now stands at an all-time high of 132.66, surpassing previous peaks of 126.31 in July 2019 and 126.82 in March 2020.
The LIJI was developed to track employment and hiring trends in the global language industry. The July 2018 baseline is the starting point from which expansion or contraction of employment and hiring activity across the industry is measured.
The increase in the April 2021 figure is linked to an uptick in job ads across most platforms monitored by Slator. Observational data related to activity across the language industry in the month of March 2021 also indicated a buoyant environment in terms of hiring and demand levels.
In M&A and funding news, the media localization space was abuzz in March, as VSI acquired Vox Mundi, Iyuno completed its transformative acquisition of major rival SDI Media to become Iyuno-SDI Group, and ZOO Digital raised GBP 7.4m in a share placement.
Elsewhere in the industry, IP and patent provider Questel acquired Morningside, a US-based LSP with around USD 75m in revenues; and German LSP t’works bought France’s Lexcelera.
Slator covered news of three additional funding rounds in March. LSP BLEND announced they raised USD 10m, AI Agency Language I/O closed a USD 5m series A, and multilingual video conferencing startup KUDO raised USD 21m, also in a series A.
Financial results released in March by a number of LSPs or their parent companies also painted a largely encouraging picture. Teleperformance-owned interpreting giant LanguageLine grew by around 17% to USD 618m, and the company said it hired close to 2,600 interpreters in 2020.
Video game specialist Keywords also reported double-digit, top-line growth in 2020, as demand for voiceover and dubbing grew, but revenues from text-based Localization services declined during the year.
UK-based Capita Translation and Interpreting (Capita TI) was praised as a standout performer by parent company, Capita plc., and emerged as one of a handful of businesses in its division (Specialist Services) not to have experienced a downturn in 2020.
New on LocJobs
Consistent with the increase in hiring activity, several new employers joined LocJobs in March 2021 including Sawa-tech, Quicksilver Translate, Global Lingo, memoQ, DS-Interpretation, LanguageWire, and Language Inspired.
Brand new localization and translation job ads on LocJobs in March included a Customer Success Manager for LanguageWire in Germany, a Social Media Specialist for Memsource, and three project management roles for Lengoo, among others.
The Slator LIJI relies on LinkedIn for part of its underlying data. The social media site has some 500 million users, many of whom share data about their skills, experience, location, company, and job titles on their personal LinkedIn pages. There are over 600,000 profiles under the Translation and Localization category and a search using the keyword Localization also yields more than 600,000 profiles.
In addition to using data from LinkedIn, the Slator LIJI also culls data from a range of sources, including global job aggregation sites and additional direct company data collected from Slator LSPI companies.