Sofia: top tech city in 2021 (and 5 reasons why)

Did you know that Bulgaria’s capital Sofia ranks among the top tech cities in the latest reports?

According to the Cities of Future 2020/21 report, Sofia ranks 20th among 80 locations. Bulgaria's capital emerges as a hotspot for innovative companies from all over the world. Here’re five reasons why:

Campus X, Sofia - high-class office spaces & amazing coworking community

1.Thriving tech industry

When asked why they expanded their business to Bulgaria, our members bunq reply without hesitation:

“Bulgaria has the needed talent in terms of language and IT skills, as well as the right mindset that matches our values of getting things done.”

The company set up its first international office and transferred its unique culture to Sofia and Campus X.

bunq is one of many international companies that have expanded their operations in Sofia. Global leaders like SAP Labs, VMWare, IBM, CISCO, Uber, and others also operate large R&D centers in Sofia employing thousands of highly qualified professionals.

In fact, IT is one of the fastest-growing sectors in Bulgaria, and specifically the country’s capital Sofia. Sofia Invest's report from 2020 states that Bulgaria's capital is a regional ICT center with over 50 000 people employed in the sector.

Furthermore, Sofia ranks 2nd among the top 10 fastest growing tech centers in Europe as far as the annual growth of active members of the ecosystem is concerned. And 90% of all technology companies in Bulgaria operate in Sofia.

3 additional reasons why Sofia is a top IT destination

1. Bulgaria is the EU country with the highest share of women in ICT (31.2%)

2. Most employees in the IT sector in Sofia work in Programming (25.80%), followed by IT Consultancy (9.89%), and Data Processing, Hosting, and related activities (7.71%).

3. Bulgaria has the highest number of fintech companies in South-East Europe (over 70, most of them located in Sofia).

2.Top-notch IT and language skills

Telerik Academy, Sofia - high-quality tech talent
Telerik Academy, Sofia - high-quality tech talent

Seeking leading professionals to power your IT company? You’ll find them in Bulgaria, which has emerged as a regional talent hub in the SEE in recent years.

Most local graduates hold a higher degree of education and have a high level of foreign language proficiency, according to the National Statistical Institute and Sofia Invest's latest report.

Moreover, new University and private tech-ed programs have emerged to respond to the growing IT business demands in the country. In fact, over 30 private software academies offer short to mid-term educational programs (6 to 30 months). Courses range from programming and computer graphics to IT project management and sales. The programs are often developed in collaboration with local IT companies, tailor-made to their specific labor demands and the number of graduates exceeds several thousand.

Campus X is proud to be home to Telerik Academy – the first Bulgarian private tech-ed organization, which partners with the entire tech industry and leads the way in tech education.

“We believe that investing in the right new talent and upskilling existing talent is paramount for the growth and success of every business,” comments Telerik Academy’s CEO Alexandra Mechkova.

3. Cost-effectiveness and favorable taxes

It may not come as a big surprise that Sofia ranks 3rd in cost-effectiveness among the main European cities in 2020. Moreover, Bulgaria’s capital ranked 3d in the