Ten years of modularity: empirical evidences on the restructuring of the auto part industry (In French)
This article reviews the carmaker-driven industrial restructurings that positioned First Tier Suppliers (henceforth FTS) at the heart of the world’s automobile system. It also draws necessarily temporary conclusions about their performance. The article is organised into three main sections. The first recaps the major transformations induced by modularity that affected inter-firm vertical relationships and highlights the challenges facing FTS. The second uses a ranking of the 30 leading automobile suppliers to analyse the instability of their global hierarchy. The final section focuses on three questions that became key for suppliers: profitability; R&D spending; and internationalisation. Most analysis involves a statistical study of a sample of 20 companies. The three sections converge to reveal a diversity of automobile supplier trajectories, in terms of both their intrinsic performance and the new kinds of operational modes they have operated within their vertical relationships.
|Date of creation:||2007|
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