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December 7, 2021updated 21 Jan 2022 1:05pm

Filings buzz in the automotive industry: 65% increase in big data mentions in Q2 of 2021

Big Data mentions for automotive company regulatory filings are up.

By Andrew Hillman

Mentions of big data within the filings of companies in the automotive industry rose 65% between the first and second quarters of 2021.

In total, the frequency of sentences related to big data between July 2020 and June 2021 was 33% higher than in 2016 when GlobalData, from whom our data for this article is taken, first began to track the key issues referred to in company filings.

When companies in the automotive industry publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies individual sentences that relate to disruptive forces facing companies in the coming years. Big data is one of these topics - companies that excel and invest in these areas are thought to be better prepared for the future business landscape and better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.

To assess whether big data is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of companies in the automotive industry, two measures were calculated. Firstly, we looked at the percentage of companies which have mentioned big data at least once in filings during the past twelve months - this was 67% compared to 42% in 2016. Secondly, we calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to big data.

Of the 50 biggest employers in the automotive industry, JTEKT Corp was the company which referred to big data the most between July 2020 and June 2021. GlobalData identified 10 big data-related sentences in the Japan-based company's filings - 0.2% of all sentences. Aisin Seiki Co Ltd mentioned big data the second most - the issue was also referred to in 0.2% of sentences in the company's filings. Other top employers with high big data mentions included Yamaha Motor Co Ltd, Toyoda Gosei Co Ltd and Toyota Motor Corp.

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Across all companies in the automotive industry the filing published in the second quarter of 2021 which exhibited the greatest focus on big data came from Ford Motor Co. Of the document's 1,720 sentences, 12 (0.7%) referred to big data.

This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on big data and how important the issue is considered within the automotive industry, but it also has limitations and should be interpreted carefully. For example, a company mentioning big data more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company's ventures into big data have been successes or failures.

GlobalData also categorises big data mentions by a series of subthemes. Of these subthemes, the most commonly referred to topic in the second quarter of 2021 was 'data analytics', which made up 50% of all big data subtheme mentions by companies in the automotive industry.

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