The situation in the supplier industry
In revenue terms, German suppliers found new strength in 2014. The previous year’s turnover was surpassed once again by 5 percent to reach 73 billion euros. As with the motor manufacturers, the automotive suppliers’ foreign turnover (+8 percent) outgrew domestic turnover (+3 percent). Contrary to the vehicle manufacturers, at 46 billion euros the domestic market remained the principal sales region (63 percent) for suppliers manufacturing in Germany. The corresponding foreign share of turnover was 37 percent, with an upward trend.
The persistently high domestic proportion was primarily attributable to Germany’s strong premium and volume customers. If one includes their export strength, the importance of the international markets for the German suppliers’ production plants as well becomes clear. The globalization efforts of recent years emphasize the ambition to have a global footprint with cutting-edge technology. This ambition is also reflected in the suppliers’ top ranking measured by turnover. The world’s three biggest suppliers are now headquartered in Germany.
Domestic and foreign growth bolstered employment in Germany. Once again in 2014, suppliers managed to increase headcount (+2 percent). At the end of 2014, 297,500 people were registered in the components industry. This marked a return to the pre-crisis level. The credit for this new-found strength is first and foremost due to the companies’ innovative spirit and global focus.