Key Data


AV Study Economic Contribution

In 2018, the film and audiovisual sector of Europe was worth €121.7 billion, accounting for approximately 22% of the industry globally.

This makes Europe the 3rd largest film and audiovisual sector in the world. The film and audiovisual industry is worth around €540 billion in turnover and is dominated by three players:

  • North America: representing 43.6% of the global market, with €238.b billion
  • Asia-Pacific: 25%, with €135.5 billion
  • Europe: 22.8%, with €121.7 billion

Previous to the tribulations and restrictions the COVID-19 crisis brought upon our daily lives, the AV sector has held firm.

Malene Ehlers

Malene Ehlers

Director of Legal & Business Affairs
Nordisk Film Production A/S

Oliver Berben

Oliver Berben

Executive Board Television, Digital
Media, Entertainment Constantin Film AG

Lorenzo Ferrari Ardicini

Lorenzo Ferrari

CEO CG Entertainment

The AV sector is one of Europe’s most valuable cultural and economic assets.

The most dynamic countries in terms of growth were Slovakia (+13.6%), Iceland (+12.2%) and Portugal (+11.2%) between 2013 and 2018.

In terms of value, Germany (+ €3b), Portugal (+ €1.7b) and the UK (+ €1.4b) significantly contribute to overall AV growth.

Germany (€23.5b), France (€16b) and the UK (€23.5b) make up 51% of the total turnover in the European AV sector. The size of the market is important for the film and audiovisual sector: the two main factors which can be attributed to its economic growth, are its ability to leverage massive investments as well as the capacity to market content to large domestic audiences.

The film and audiovisual sector in Europe contributes €46.9 Billion to the European GDP, and generates more added value than the aerospace sector (€45.7b) and iron & steel industry (€41.5b).


The film and audiovisual sector directly employs more than 1 million people across Europe.

This accounts for 1,049,000 jobs in direct employment in 2018. Previous to COVID-19, employment grew quicker than turnover, highlighting the high-job concentration of the industry: between 2013 and 2018, 218,500 jobs were created over 5 years, representing a growth of 5.1% (vs. 2% per year for turnover).

Indirect and induced employment provides another estimated 1,000,000 jobs in 2018 throughout Europe. Film and Audiovisual businesses are deeply integrated into a network of technical partners and subcontractors (security, sound systems, textiles…).

Based on the UK and other countries’ multipliers, there are at least as many indirect or induced jobs as people directly employed. While there is no robust employment data available for freelancers, professional organizations confirm that they represent an important part of industry direct employment.

William Maunier

William Maunier

European President UNI MEI 

Neil Hatton

Neil Hatton

Chief Executive UK Screen Alliance 

Anjani Patel

Anjani Patel

Head of Inclusion and Diversity Producers’ Alliance for Cinema and Television (PACT)


jobs in direct
employment in 2018


AV-Study-SMES Sector

The European film and audiovisual sector is dominated by small and medium enterprises (SMEs), with 77.6% of businesses structured around 0-to-1 employees.

The film and audiovisual sector represented more businesses in Europe than the telecommunications sector (49,000) in 2018.

The Netherlands (12,100), the UK (12,023), France (11,487) are the three most significant countries in terms of film and audiovisual businesses in 2018. Eastern European and Nordic countries, however, are also key players in the number of businesses across Europe: Poland (7,394), Sweden (8,552), Norway (2,877), Romania (2,518) in 2018.

Tamara Babun

Tamara Babun

Founder and Managing Director
of Wolfgang & Dolly LLC

Suzanna Holmqvist

Suzanna Holmqvist

Chief Marketing Officer, Svenska Bio 


AV Study Illustration

Within the overall film and audiovisual sector, film is a springboard for European exports.

Films exported outside of Europe provided €5.1 Billion in revenue in 2018, thus representing a 19% increase in turnover growth between 2013 and 2018.

Exports are growing and are becoming more important to the European film and AV sector’s economic model, and now account for 4.2% of the film and audiovisual turnover (up from 3.8% in 2013).

France (€0.4b), Germany (€0.7b) and the UK (€1.9b), are the main film exporters in Europe. Iceland, Estonia and the UK are the countries most dependent on exports, accounting for 9.1%, 8.1% and 8%, respectively of their local turnover.

Film exports represent 18% of European Cultural and Creative exports (as defined by Eurostat: works of art, books, recorded media, jewelry and antiques).

John McVay

OBE Chief Executive Producers’
Alliance for Cinema and Television


As important actors in the sports industry, TV channels and broadcasters enhance the positive economic impact that sports have on the economy:

  • €27b in direct economic impact (in turnover)
  • More than 280,000 direct jobs
  • €10b in fiscal contributions for France, Spain, the UK, Italy and Germany.

With €13.6b paid by broadcasters on a territory-by-territory basis in exchange for access to sports contents, TV rights represent a massive part of sports business revenues in Europe. TV rights are now the most significant share of sports bodies’ revenues (more than 80%).

It is this territory-by-territory rights exchange that replaces the high costs of investment into the production of sporting events, competitions and trainings, away from placing the burden of higher costs to the consumer, while providing a more varied viewing experience of sporting options.

Mark Lichtenhein

Chairman of the Sports Rights Owners Coalition (SROC)

AV Study Illustration