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Top 100 Global Manufacturing Companies 2018

September 2019

This briefing provides an overview of the top 100 global manufacturing companies. The coverage spans 2013 to 2018, and covers the entirety of manufacturing industries, with analysis of company performance and future trends.

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Key Findings

USD7.2 trillion in revenue in 2018

The top 100 manufacturers generated combined revenue of USD7.2 trillion in 2018, accounting for 15% of global manufacturing output. Their share of revenue increased by one percentage point from 2017, due to growing consolidation in the manufacturing industry and expansion into new markets.

Automotive and hi-tech goods industries dominate

Out of the 100 leading manufacturers in 2018, 43 were primarily engaged in the production of automotive products or hi-tech goods. However, slowing growth in the automotive industry is forecast to result in stagnating numbers of automotive companies in the ranking.

European companies are catching up

The US and Japan are the leading nations in terms of the number of companies in the top 100 rank. Strong B2B demand in their domestic markets, strong export potential and expansion into new markets secured the positions of US and Japanese companies. Nevertheless, a larger number of European companies made it into the top 100 rank in 2018. Mergers and acquisitions, investment in new products and innovations, as well as business-friendly reforms helped to improve the position of European companies.

Mergers and acquisitions are important for growth

Companies are finding it increasingly difficult to grow organically, due to saturated demand in the developed markets and growing competition. M&As help companies to expand into new markets and augment revenue.

Recovery of defence sector

More aerospace and defence companies were among the largest 100 global manufacturers in 2018. Rising global political tensions and increasing defence spending in the US, China and Europe benefited the defence industry.


Key findings

Overview of the Companies

Production value of USD7.2 trillion from top 100 companies
Key trends in the top 100 companies
Automotive and hi-tech goods industries dominate
US and Japan in the lead, Europe strengthens positions

Trends in Leading Manufacturing Sectors

Automotive industry facing slowing growth
Hi-tech goods industry to benefit from rising investment in ICT
Chemical products industry: emerging countries to drive growth
Food and beverages industry to maintain steady growth
Pharmaceuticals: China to drive future production growth

Overview of Top 10 Companies

Top 10 manufacturing companies: automotive industry in the lead
No 1: Volkswagen AG: company faces slower growth
No 2: Toyota Motor Corp: cost cutting measures to help face headwinds
No 3: Samsung Electronics Co Ltd: slower growth as B2C demand cools
No 4: Daimler AG: organisational changes to increase flexibility
No 5: Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd: weaker demand hurts profits
No 6: Ford Motor Co: facing weaker demand and rising costs
No 7: General Motors Co: increasing focus on future products
No 8: Honda Motor Co Ltd: cost cuts expected to improve profitability
No 9: FCA Group: company faces weaker sales and rising costs
No 10: SAIC Motor Corp Ltd: sales growth slows due to weaker demand

Appendix: 11-100 Companies

Companies 11-20
Companies 21-30
Companies 31-40
Companies 41-50
Companies 51-60
Companies 61-70
Companies 71-80
Companies 81-90
Companies 91-100


Research methodology
Industry scope (1)
Industry scope (2)
Other notes and explanations
Exchange rates used


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