The language services market is expected to register a CAGR of 5.3% during the forecast period (2021 - 2026). The lockdown restrictions amidst the pandemic have forced the entire world to stay at home, which has given a strong impetus to the development of trade via the internet. Applications like Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, and social media have witnessed a surge in the number of users. This has resulted in an increased need for more content across the globe and has served as good news for translators, owing to increased demand for their services while providing the ease to be organized remotely.
- The primary factors that are driving the demand for language services include the rapidly increasing globalization among businesses, the incremental rise of digitizing content, and the increase in customer service that's becoming more personalized and international.
- iFlytek, a speech recognition company based out of China and providing translation services, was successful in raising USD 407 million (CNY 2.8 billion) from its investors, that includes the state-run investment fund China Reform Holdings and the Anhui Railway Development Fund. The company claims that the funding will be used to enhance the translation output along with the output of the AI translation engine. Such developments provide significant scope for market growth over the forecast period, especially for startups.
- The demand for language services is no longer concentrated on large multinational corporations. Still, the small and large businesses, and local and state governments, including all types of other organizations, have also increased their use of translation, interpretation, and different kinds of language services.
- International trade has been steadily expanding over the past few decades, which includes the proliferation of free trade agreements that have led to a virtual explosion of international trades across the world. Moreover, the increasing foreign competition and various government initiatives have led all kinds of businesses irrespective of size to take initiatives regarding opportunities available to them in foreign markets.
- The ongoing trends in international marketing are also expected to accelerate the growth in the language services market. With these services, companies are now able to reach increasing audiences across the globe at a lower cost through the web. As these audiences are increasingly composed of foreign people, the market is expected to grow even further.
- The increase in internet usage, combined with the trend toward content marketing, has opened up new avenues for the language industry. The PPC advertising and social media marketing that is aimed at foreign audiences are also expanding at remarkable rates. Social networking sites and multiple blogs that are active across the world are also providing platforms for effective content marketing that include articles, infographics, videos, and multimedia productions. All this content is localized for optimum effectiveness, which is one of the major factors driving the market.
- Moreover, the market is witnessing multiple M&A activities by the players in order to strengthen their positions in the market. For instance, in Jan 2019, Lionbridge acquired Gengo, which is a Japanese technology and services company. In Mar 2019, Appen acquired Figure Eight, which is a machine-learning training platform, based in Silicon Valley. Also, in Nov 2019, Datawords acquired a chatbot provider base in Asia called Whatsquare.
- The entire world now is at home which gives a strong impetus to the development of trade and entertainment on the internet. YouTube, Netflix, social media, Amazon witness a surge in the number of users. It produces the need for more content globally. It is good news for translators since their services will be in higher demand and their work is much easier to be organized remotely.
- Another reason is the active exchange of the experience of fighting against the virus and treatment of the patients that drives the global discussion and information exchange between researchers in healthcare, virology, immunology, epidemiology, etc. So the highest demand can be expected in translators in the medical sector and the field knowledge will be most welcome.
Key Market Trends
Translation Services is Expected to Witness Significant Growth
- Within language services, translation services play a key role in facilitating communication between users of different languages. These services encompass both spoken as well as signed communication and follow the International Standards Organization (ISO) definition that states the rendering of a spoken or signed message into another language by preserving the meaning of the source language content.
- The growing customer outreach has enhanced the scope of translation services in order to fulfill the needs of the customers, barring language preferences. Historical data signifies that various companies are opting for translation services in order to provide comfort to their clients, both national as well as international.
- Translation services usually require an integrated platform of cloud computing and big data analytics, so as to ensure the access of data from anywhere. This also results in increased storage capacity and more efficiency.
- With more and more companies offering their services through the Internet, the need for websites and web content translation has grown manifold. Businesses across the world are seeking translation services with an intention to serve their customers and keep up with their demands. While individuals also are using this type of service, the share of such usage is very minimal.
- According to the latest figures, around 300 hours of video content is being uploaded to YouTube every single minute, and around 5 billion videos are being watched on a daily basis by users. Also, around 70% of the YouTube viewers are from outside the United States and are non-English speaking people. This trend is certainly increasing the demand for video translations and localizations on a large scale.
- The post-editing of machine translations (PEMT) is expected to be a major trend in the translation services domain during the forecast period.
North America is Expected to Witness Significant Growth
- The language services market in the North American region is expected to witness significant growth owing to the increasing diversity in the region. As the population in the region continues to shift, and it becomes more diverse, the need for effective language services is expected to increase in all the industries across the region, and qualified translators and interpreters are crucial in serving the needs of this increasingly diverse population.
- The advent of multicultural marketing has become a topic of importance these days, which is expected to drive the language services demand. The changing demographics of the region have made marketing strategies to diverse communities a priority for multiple businesses that previously used to rely only on a single language.
- Moreover, according to the United States Census Bureau, there are more than 350 languages spoken in the United States. The Asian population is also rising, owing to increased immigration. New immigration trends are expanding the current language services market to serve these populations.
- The understanding of the current language trends in their region and how they continue to shape the market and the country, help the organizations to understand the rapidly rising need for providing multicultural consumers with much more effective communication through professional language services.
- The players in the market are looking to strengthen their competitiveness through various efforts such as multiple M&A activities, innovation of products, increased R&D, as well as an exploration of overseas markets. For instance, in April 2020, AppTek, a leader in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), Neural Machine Translation (NMT), and Natural Language Understanding (NLU) technologies, today announced a new partnership with TransPerfect. The combined capabilities of AppTek’s powerful ASR engine and TransPerfect’s specialized translation and localization services will further improve customer workflows by reducing project turnaround times.
The language services market is highly competitive owing to the presence of multiple vendors providing their services in domestic and in the international markets. The market appears to be fragmented, with the major players adopting strategies, like product innovation, and mergers and acquisitions, primarily to expand their service portfolio and to stay competitive in the market landscape. Some of the major players in the market are Atlas Language Service Inc., Lionbridge Technologies Inc., RWS Holdings Plc, and SDL Plc, among others.
- January 2021 - Semantix and its long-term partner ESTeam were awarded the EU Commission’s call for tender GROW/2020/OP/0002. The contract is for translation services associated with the technical regulations and rules on information society services laid down in Directive (EU) 2015/15351.
- June 2020 - RSW Holdings PLC announced the acquisition of Iconic Translation Machines Ltd, with an initial investment of USD 10 million and additional deferred consideration of up to USD 10 million in the company’s shares. The acquisition is anticipated to provide the company with the competitive advantage of leveraging language technology to improve its service delivery, as well as strengthen its capabilities in service offerings in the Neural Machine Translation (NMT) solutions.
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Table of Contents
1.2 Scope of the Study
4.2 Market Drivers
4.2.1 Increased Global Corporate Presence
4.2.2 Increase in Online and Offline Content
4.3 Market Challenges
4.4 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis
4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers
4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers
4.4.3 Threat of New Entrants
4.4.4 Threat of Substitutes
4.4.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry
4.5 Impact of COVID-19 on the Market
5.1.1 Translation Services
5.1.2 Localization Services
5.1.3 Interpreting Services
5.1.4 Other Services
5.2 By End-user Vertical
5.2.1 Life Sciences (Pharmaceuticals, Medical Devices, Biotechnology, CROs)
5.2.2 Media and Entertainment (OTT, Games, Box Office, Pay TV)
5.2.3 Legal, Finance, and Patents
5.2.5 Other End-user Verticals
5.3 By Geography
5.3.1 North America (United States, Canada)
5.3.2 Europe (United Kingdom, Germany, France, Rest of Europe)
5.3.3 Asia Pacific (China, Japan, Singapore, Rest of Asia Pacific)
5.3.4 Latin America
5.3.5 Middle East and Africa
6.1.1 Atlas Language Services Inc.
6.1.2 Globe language Services Inc.
6.1.3 Lionbridge Technologies Inc.
6.1.4 RWS Holdings PLC
6.1.5 SDL PLC
6.1.6 Semantix AB
6.1.7 Summa Linguae Technologies
6.1.8 Teleperformance SE
6.1.9 TransPerfect Global Inc.
6.1.10 Welocalize Inc.