Automotive supplier

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An automotive suppliers ( English Automotive Supplier ) is a company , the automobile manufacturers individual components (eg., Screws) or entire modules (z. B. preassembled dashboards ) returns. It is therefore part of a car supply chain . The special feature of this part of the manufacturing sector is the predominant often requires synchronous delivery ( english just-in time- or just-in-sequence supply ) of the parts to the customer. The close connection that is a prerequisite for this characterizes the interdependence.


The vast majority of fundamental innovations come from the supplier industry. In addition, suppliers are taking on more and more production and development services. About 78 percent of the added value is provided by the suppliers - with an upward trend - and only 22 percent by the manufacturers. The official statistics show roughly a tie in employment. According to this, 329,000 people worked for manufacturers and 321,000 for suppliers in 2006. In a study, the Fraunhofer Institute ISI found that the actual direct employment share in the supplier industry is around one million, three times as high as previously assumed.


The automotive supply industry is exposed to extremely high pressure from various sides. The influencing factors range from tougher global competition, cost and price pressure on vehicle manufacturers, increases in material prices and the behavior of banks and financial investors. The consequences are:

  • The concentration processes accelerate. In the coming years, the number of supplier companies in Germany will continue to decrease, mainly due to a lack of financial resources. According to the “FAST 2015” study by the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and Mercer , this number will halve by 2015.
  • This consolidation to Tier 1 also increases tensions between Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers.
  • Suppliers with a sales volume of 40 to 100 million euros have been hardest hit by the decline in gross profit and return on sales for several years. The winners, on the other hand, were suppliers with a sales volume of 100 to 500 million euros (IKB analysis).
  • Bankruptcies are increasing.
  • Automotive suppliers in South America are particularly hard hit . According to a study published in 2012, 38% of all suppliers in Argentina are unprofitable.

In particular, the massive pressure on prices is leading to the fact that development budgets are being cut at suppliers and the pace of innovation is slowing down. In addition, experience has shown that this price reduction leads to a decline in quality. The increasing number of product recalls are among other things an indication of this.

Another challenge for automotive suppliers lies in the change in the market, which is associated with new developments (e.g. through changes to the drive trains in new vehicle models).

One way for automotive suppliers to get relief is to set up supply chains and branch plants abroad. In recent years, European suppliers have increasingly built branch plants in the countries in which their (European) customers have plants, e.g. B. in China. Thus, the supply chain is shorter and new customers can be developed. German supplier components are in great demand abroad in many places, for example in Silicon Valley in California . This makes it possible to open up new sales markets and business areas and to increase the number of units.

The world's largest automotive suppliers

See also


  • David Braun: Which supply chain management measures do automotive suppliers benefit from? A value-based analysis at the interface between the supplier and the automobile manufacturer . Gabler 2011, (also: Univ. Marburg, Diss., 2011), ISBN 978-3-8349-3389-8 .
  • Hendrik Degenhardt: Supplier-buyer coupling in location decisions using the example of the German automotive supplier industry . Shaker 2011, (also: Techn. Univ. Darmstadt, Diss., 2011), ISBN 978-3-8440-0466-3 .
  • Fischer / Reichmann / Neubeck: Accounting in the automotive supplier industry . Vahlen, 3rd edition 2012, ISBN 978-3-8006-3947-2 .
  • Rainer Kurek: Success strategies for automotive suppliers: Effective management in a dynamic environment . Springer 2004, ISBN 978-3-540-20885-3 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Rebecca Eisert, Henryk Hielscher: Sick System: The brutal methods of the car companies against suppliers. , in: Wirtschaftswoche online, January 19, 2015
  2. Harald Schatz: relationship crisis! - The customs in business relationships between automobile manufacturers and their suppliers. Wagner, Gelnhausen 2010, ISBN 978-3-86683-810-9
  3. ^ Josef Glaß: Automotive Supplier in Argentina. (PDF; 175 kB) (No longer available online.) Formerly in the original ; accessed on January 28, 2013 .  ( Page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  4. Martin Franz: Addiction to profit: durability suffers from the savings efforts of the car manufacturers. Heise Internet portal, "Cars" section, March 26, 2015
  5. Suppliers: Electromobility and Co. create a high level of uncertainty, but also great opportunities. Internet portal, July 18, 2016
  6. Automotive supplier study: "Industry is facing revolutionary changes". eMobilitaetOnline internet portal, July 7, 2016
  7. German auto suppliers are in great demand in Silicon Valley. Internet portal, July 21, 2016