Size matters when you are competing on the global stage, and Germany has its fair share of business giants. The country is home to the world’s largest chemicals company, BASF: Its Ludwigshafen site is the biggest integrated chemical production facility on earth. In 2016, Volkswagen Group edged ahead of Japanese rival Toyota to become the world’s largest automaker by volume. Robert Bosch is the number one supplier of automotive components. Software company SAP is the market leader for the enterprise resource planning systems big companies use to manage their operations.
Even if they can’t claim the global number one spot, plenty of Germany’s other multinationals are among the world’s biggest in their respective industries. There’s Allianz, the second-largest insurer, for example, and diversified industrial manufacturer Siemens, Europe’s largest such company by far. Carmakers BMW and Daimler may be smaller than VW, but they are still major global players. Continental AG holds the number three position in the league table of automotive suppliers.