IT ranks third among the Ukrainian industrial sectors by revenue in foreign currencies. Experts believe that in the next five to seven years, the local IT companies’ combined revenue will have more than doubled in size. The cities of Kharkiv and Dnipro are expected to play a key part in this upward trend: they are rated among the top five IT clusters in the country.
Kharkiv IT hub
There are some 25,000 IT professionals in Kharkiv, employed by over 450 companies. The general consensus is that the city seriously outpaces other IT clusters in Ukraine, save for Kyiv.
Ukraine’s IT companies paid a combined total of 7.8 billion hryvnias ($280 million) in taxes in 2017, of which Kharkiv contributed a whopping 5 billion (43% of this sum was then directed to the city budget). The local IT specialists receive 95% of all their orders from foreign customers, with 65% of the overseas assignments generated in the USA and a further 25% in Europe. Kharkiv is home to a number of IT majors, including Singularex Nix Solutions, Epam, Plarium, SoftServe, Global Logic and Akvelon.
At its current growth rate, experts expect Kharkiv’s IT sector to have increased its tax payments nearly threefold by 2025. This would be made possible thanks to the industry’s cooperation with the local universities, whose combined annual output of graduates stands at around 2,000. That said, the sector requires much more workforce: in 2018, the city’s demand for IT specialists was twice the size of available supply.
Dnipro IT Hub
The Dnipro IT cluster was pioneered, among others, by the companies Archer Software, DataArt, Luxoft, Sitecore Ukraine, SoftServe, ISD and 111 Minutes. Today, the city’s IT community comprises over 200 hi-tech businesses and employs around 10,000 professionals, 40% of whom are seniors. If the current trend continues, the region’s market will be employing double the number of specialists by 2025. Dnipro’s IT companies mainly service the financial sector, including global banks, as well as the medicine, e-commerce, energy, gaming and automotive industries. Their clients include leading IT corporations on the Fortune 500 list.
Over 1,000 young IT specialists graduate from Dnipro’s seven universities every year. The city hosted a total of 368 IT-themed events in 2017 alone, 53% of which were free to attend. The largest such events, Run IT, ITEM and IT Dnipro Conference, each had over 500 visitors.
Kharkiv IT Cluster
Founded in 2015, this NGO brings together IT businesses, local authorities and educational institutions in a bid to bring about holistic changes to the city’s IT ecosystem. Kharkiv IT Cluster represents over 40 successful companies which have, to date, implemented more than 20 joint educational projects, seen through 30 social initiatives and organised in excess of 50 events aimed at industry professionals.
Olha Shapoval, Executive Director: “Clients from all over the world choose companies represented by Kharkiv IT Cluster for their global-level quality, punctuality and systemic approach. Kharkiv IT Cluster is a driver for new ideas and projects, an efficient communicator between IT companies, the authorities, educational institutions and international organisations. We are a powerful integrator for the region, working to shape an active IT community and build a new Ukrainian economy.”
Dnipro Smart City
Dnipro has recently seen the launch of a business park project known as Innovation Forpost. Sitting on a total area of 61.4 ha, the site has 5,600 square metres allocated for the IT sector. The project is being implemented by the Dnipro Development Agency in conjunction with the municipal authorities and the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine. There will be offices, hubs, recreation areas, car parks and residential buildings on the premises. It is within the park’s perimeter that the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine is planning to launch a test platform for the Hyperloop technology. Innovation Forpost is expected to be up and running by late 2022.
Kharkiv Smart City
Vodafone Ukraine, the Kharkiv City Reform Office and Kharkiv IT Cluster are jointly working on the Vodafone Smart City programme. The initiative is aimed at introducing a number of smart solutions to urban infrastructure, including transport, medicine, utilities, e-government and security. Similar solutions have already been implemented successfully in Amsterdam, Barcelona and London.
IT Dnipro Community
This non-profit public organisation, founded in 2016, is committed to creating an environment agreeable to the IT business in Dnipro region. The network unites 29 IT companies and includes four partners. It engages in analysis of the regional IT sector, educational projects (in particular those focused on C-level specialists), infrastructural development and urban ecosystems. itcluster.dp.ua
Yevhen Hostishchev, Executive Director: “We work to promote the IT industry, improve the quality of specialised education, create a favourable working and training environment for IT specialists, and make sure that said professionals and their families live comfortably in our city. I am convinced that Dnipro is among the largest Ukrainian IT hubs to profitably invest in, and that IT Dnipro Community is capable of leading the region’s IT market successfully.”
Author: Natalia Kyrylenko
Photo: it-kharkiv.com, itcluster.dp.ua, softserveinc.com