Annually we track the performance and strategic trends of the largest dealer groups in Europe and the 2019 edition of the European Top 50 has just been published by Automotive New Europe. The groups are ranked and sorted by 2018 revenue, only include contributions from automotive activities, and operate on a huge scale which in some cases surpasses the volumes reached by car manufacturers.
In this year’s ranking, the large Swiss dealer group Emil Frey remains top, achieving a further increase in annual revenue to an estimated €13.50 billion, mainly due to the acquisition of 261 former VW-group owned Porsche Holding sites. This increases the gap between first and second namely Penske Automotive Europe by a margin of more than €5.5 billion. In general, UK groups appear to be weakening, heavily influenced by the slowing new car market, Brexit discussions and unfavourable exchange rates. The situation is similar for German groups which appear to be stagnating, whilst we see a number of Scandinavian players strengthening themselves by expanding outside their home markets.
The Top 50 achieve on average €2.3 billion revenue from sales and service through their 105 franchise points each, where they achieve on average 42,000 retail new car sales. Taken together, their share of the annual new passenger car market in Europe grew from around 11% to roughly 12% year-on-year which demonstrates their weight on a pan-European basis, whilst the Top 50 dealer groups at national level show different performance and scale, driven by market structure, economic factors and competition.
The biggest groups are notably in a better position to react to changing environmental factors, such as customer behaviour, as they have the scale to invest and benefit from synergy effects across operations. But despite the fact that we see some innovations in new channels and formats, there is no group quite yet joining all touchpoints together for an improved customer experience across their operations. Will this come any time soon? And how will the smaller players cope with the changing requirements? Will we see more dealers working under a shared collaboration to manage investments and balance out risks?
The webinar will include data from our European Top 50 ranking, as well as from further national top rankings, and will provide ICDP’s view on the future development of dealers. Event details coming soon,.
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