Although Spanish self-storage did not emerge until 2001, its expansion and acceptance has been some of the fastest in the “Old World.” In fact, this market’s growth is higher than the European average. Spain ranks No. 4 in the European Union in terms of the number of self-storage facilities, behind Great Britain, The Netherlands and France. And the prosperity of Bluespace, the country’s largest self-storage operator, matches that of the general industry.
The flourishing of Spain’s storage industry is the result of large, latent demand driven by the country’s social and demographic conditions, which have led to an increased need for residential and commercial storage in major urban areas:
- Metropolitan areas such as Barcelona, Madrid and Valencia boast large populations.
- Changes in the residential real state sector have resulted in higher prices and the construction of much smaller houses with square footage below the European average.
- Spanish disposable income has significantly increased, and more people are buying houses, and need storage during their relocation.
The market’s spectacular growth is also due to the increase of public knowledge regarding self-storage. This has happened due to factors like proximity, visibility, the Internet and, of course, the high advertising investments of operators.
According to the figures provided by the Spanish Self-Storage Association, approximately 70 storage facilities are operating in the country:
- 39 percent are in Catalonia (the autonomous region leader in the industry, mostly in the county of Barcelona).
- 23.4 percent are in Madrid.
- 14.6 percent are in the Comunidad Valenciana (half in Valencia, half in Alicante).
- 7.3 percent in the Balearic Islands (most of them in Palma de Mallorca).
- 15.7 percent are in Andalusia (Málaga), Basque Country (San Sebastián and Vitoria) and Asturias (Avilés).
Spanish self-storage demographics indicate 70 percent of customers are individuals and 30 percent are businesses requiring temporary or permanent space. Those statistics are similar in the rest of the European countries.