The global auto industry has a major issue with business deployment to fast-growing emerging markets, on top of the existing challenges to promote green energy and sustainability.
NRI automotive group deploys consultants in Japan, U.S., Europe, China, India, and ASEAN countries with insights and analysis of unique local market conditions to support clients with on-the-ground research. NRI leverages its network of governments, universities, and research institutions worldwide to remain current on the latest policies and technology trends. Taking advantage of an abundance of consultants with science backgrounds, we regularly bring future perspective to the automotive industry based on our deep knowledge of technology. We use this accumulated knowledge to provide complete support along the supply chain of the automotive industry, from the formulation to the implementation of plans using the cross-sectional cooperative structure. Our support covers business and engineering strategies, rule-making strategies that influence policy, marketing, development outsourcing, local procurement, and dealer management; and after-business strategies, to name a few.
Business strategy in the automotive industry and the auto parts industry
Recently the auto industry has moved towards regional specialization of technology development, with different regions having different strengths. For example, China, India, and ASEAN specialize in development of peripheral industries (materials, parts, production equipment), with automotive IT mostly in the U.S., and advanced safety technologies in Europe. Therefore, it has become necessary to seek the resources of vehicle production across the world, and the Japanese auto industry has had to deploy manufacturing functions on a global scale.
NRI does not just provide marketing research and support; we support the entire business strategy for auto and auto-parts manufacturers to stay competitive in the global market, ranging from supply chain establishment and business collaboration to role allocation between headquarters and overseas offices.
Technology strategies including next-generation vehicles, self-driving and materials
Today’s automotive industry focuses on the development of environmental and safety technologies represented by sustainable electric powertrains and self-driving interfaces. These technologies require advanced control technologies and their prominence further accelerates computerization of cars. At the same time, new players from the electrical industry are bringing the "logic of the electronics industry" to the automotive industry, including shorter development cycles and horizontal division of labor (meaning dispersing work tasks to different types of specialists). This will have a great impact on the structure of the industry.
NRI values the attitude of understanding the application of emerging technologies before speaking about the business. For example, for the electric powertrain field, NRI established a system to discuss, review and make proposals for the entire value chain including systems, batteries, components and materials. This system allows us to regularly study and analyze the future perspective of powertrain on a global scale, supporting the establishment of clients' visions as well as the formulation of business strategy.
Dealer management reform in markets of emerging countries
The auto market structure is shifting from the demand for the first vehicles to the demand for substitute vehicles. Manufacturers also need to operate with the dealers and emphasize the retention of existing customers. However, as many dealers are established quickly to catch up with the rapid growth of the market, there is a lack of service capabilities and poor insight of the industry causing serious problems.
NRI conducts a project in China for reforming dealer services in cooperation with several manufacturers of consumer vehicles. In addition to the development of service programs in emerging countries and providing customer service training, we promote deployment of the "Japanese-style dealer services," in which results are thoroughly visualized and managed.
Planning and promotion of group strategies for automotive and parts businesses
The mission of automotive manufacturers is to support the sustainable development of society through the development of attractive, sustainable vehicles. In that sense, the needs for sustainable practices, safety, comfort, and convenience will increase. However, it is important to note that there are declining trends towards lower prices as a result of the rise of emerging markets. Accordingly, technology development in vehicles will become so bloated and complex that the supply of management resources for manufacturers is not only constrained but forced to run businesses beyond their capability.
NRI proposes group strategies that work beyond the boundaries of individual departments for the entire organization. The strategies should be based on total optimization, but also provide customers with steadfast support to reach a consensus of each company.