Size does (not always) matter

16. Mai 2016

size mattersConcentration has been a trend in many industries for a long time. M & A activities, in order to enhance economies of scale (and to eliminate competition), keeps these industries in motion. In the automotive business for instance, the number of independent manufacturers declined from more than 60 in the 1960s to only 12 in the early 2000s. And most specialists, despite some new players such as chinese producers or disruptors such as TESLA, expect this consolidation process to continue.

Big is beautiful, and now this: Subaru, sales figures somewhere between number 15 and 20 in the world, is the most profitable car manufacturer – for the second year in a row! According to the Center of Automotive Management, Subaru’s margin jumped another 3 percentage points in 2015. Sure, Subaru does have a strong link to Toyota, but then, what about the cooperation between Daimler and Nissan or Toyota and BMW?

From my point of view, Subaru’s strength is their distinct focus on a particular niche segment and the specific wants and needs of the customers in this segment. Obviously, even in the very competitive automotive mass-markets, niche players are able to hit the bull’s eye – big is not always beautiful.

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