Employment and hiring activity in the global language market dipped slightly in December 2022, after climbing to its highest-ever level the month prior since the Slator Language Industry Job Index (LIJI) was launched in July 2018.
The Slator LIJI declined three points to 184.12 in the last month of the year, after reaching a record high 187.13 in November 2022.
Despite the dip, the index still beat the (then record-breaking) figure of 180.53 in December 2021, closing out the year more than 11 points higher than the January figure and 84 points above the baseline (100).
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.
M&A, Funding, Financials
In M&A, Ontario-based language service provider (LSP) Nations Translation Group acquired Language Marketplace, a fellow Canadian LSP, taking Canada's USD 1.1bn language industry a step closer toward consolidation.
Meanwhile, a longstanding stalwart of the UK public sector, Capita TI, was acquired by LanguageLine, the California-based subunit of French call center giant Teleperformance. Also in California, media services provider Blu Digital Group acquired Haymillian, a dubbing, subtitling, and access services provider headquartered in the UK.
In Funding, DeepL reportedly completed a major investment round that valued the machine translation company at around USD 1bn. And another Indian AI dubbing platform, NeuralGarage, raised USD 1.45m in seed funding, although the round actually closed in October.
Interpreting providers did well in November. French call center giant Teleperformance highlighted the acceleration in Q3 FY22 (Subscriber Content) of its interpreting specialist subunit, LanguageLine. AMN Healthcare reported on the solid growth in Q3 FY22 (Subscriber Content) of its interpreting arm, AMN Language Services, formerly Stratus Video.
In media localization, Zoo Digital’s financial results for the half year to September 2022 showed how buyer spend was below 3% of content budgets but growing fast (Subscriber Content). Ai-Media closed its Q1 FY23 with increased revenue (Subscriber Content), the renewal of an exclusive agreement with big tech, and new partnerships.
And Japan’s largest LSP, Honyaku Center, reported in November how translation and interpreting demand is now approaching pre-Covid levels (Subscriber Content), thus improving on its FY22 forecast.
Labor market conditions remained tight in the US with unemployment rising slightly to 3.7% as at early November 2022. In Europe, latest unemployment figures were up again to 6.1% after a marginal improvement to 6% from July to September.
However, the language industry job market has proven to be steady across the US and the EU as reflected on Slator’s job platform LocJobs, where there were 12 new job postings in November 2022.