19th International Annual Congress of the Automotive Industry in Zwickau
“The German automotive supply industry with its many medium-sized companies is well placed in an international comparison, but it will have to expect great challenges. The successful value chain is in a state of upheaval. The innovative products of German suppliers are becoming increasingly more attractive for foreign automobile manufacturers too. In this scenario, the East German suppliers must press ahead with internationalization”, announced Klaus Bräunig, Managing Director of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) at the 19th International Annual Congress of the Automotive Industry in Zwickau. The Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) Chemnitz/Zwickau and the Automotive Supplier Network (AMZ) were hosting the event for the first time. “In July 2015, sales by the German automotive suppliers at EUR 44.8 billion were just under 3 per cent higher than the previous year’s level. Export earnings grew by 5 per cent to EUR 16.8 billion and domestic sales by 2 per cent to EUR 27.9 billion. With a workforce of over 300,000, the suppliers are building their strengths to new levels”, said Bräunig.
However, only those who operate worldwide and supply worldwide can profit from the strong-growth markets and be successful in the long term. “The global purchasing policy of the automobile manufacturers requires that suppliers must be able to deliver worldwide – with constant quality and at competitive prices. That is why even small and medium-sized suppliers are now laying the foundations for successful growth strategies with local operations. Many smaller medium-sized companies without any foreign manufacturing capacities are faced with the decision of whether to invest in the growth markets. They regularly have to review their business model in order to be able to remain part of the international, intensely competitive value chain”, stressed Bräunig.
He went on to point out that pressure was rising along the entire value chain. “Today, suppliers contribute 75 per cent to the automotive value chain and now already account for 50 per cent of development spending. The medium-sized suppliers in East Germany especially can secure their domestic business locations with technical innovations and reinforce the good reputation of Germany as an automotive production base”, added the VDA Managing Director.