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2008 Ranks: Auto, Gas & Utilities

The wRatings Corporation reports:
Auto Industry Poised for Turnaround while
Utilities May Reach Profits of their Oil & Gas Peers,
According to wRatings 2008 Study on Competitive Advantage


AutoNation, BGE/Constellation Energy, Harley-Davidson and Marathon are Most Competitive in their industries.

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Three compelling facts the Auto Industry is poised for a turnaround:

  • Expectations for consumers have increased for the past 3 years as innovation drives more and more purchases.
  • Consumers are willing to pay more if auto companies could meet their expectations, indicating that pricing power exists but the current models and business framework are unable to deliver enough for consumers to open up their wallets.
  • As consumers delay their auto purchases yet expectations for more cost efficient and better design continue to rise, a flood of opportunity is coming over the next few years. Existing players are likely to fold or merge, and new players will emerge that can meet consumer demand. The winners will have visionary CEOs that can transform the industry similar to how Steve Jobs did with the iPod.
So what if Steve Jobs were CEO of one of the Big Three Automakers? We would certainly expect a deal with a more successful company to quickly take place (like the Apple-Microsoft deal upon his return). The focus would be on building a customer experience second to none where consumers would enjoy the sales and service process (like an Apple Retail Store). A community of suppliers and dealers would be expected to deliver at the highest level possible, and be an integral part of the reason to purchase (like Apple iTunes). And, of course, the products would be sleek, cool and able to do things that only Steve Jobs can imagine (iPod, iPhone).

What about the Utilities industry? If the shift to alternative energy occurs (which is arguable now with the oil price decline), the Utilities industry may be in the best position to generate profits assuming distribution can take place in a non-regulated business environment. And if Steve Jobs were CEO of an Auto company, consumers would pay the premium for the alternative energy cars, which would allow future and better models to be sold cheaper.

TABLE NOTES:
- Total Moats represent the level of consumer strength a company possesses across nine sources of advantage.
- 5-Yr EP represents a sliding average of the past five years of economic profit for the parent corporation.
- Companies that do not publish enough financials to calculate economic profit, such as BMW or Porsche, are not ranked. We do still publish their consumer strength ratings. Look up any company rankings by clicking on Search Companies at the top of any screen.

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2008 2007 AUTO COMPANIES TICKER 2008
W Score
Total Moats 5-Yr EP 2007
REVENUES
1 1 Harley-Davidson » HOG 87.2 16 18.3% $6,153
2 4 Honda » HMC 64.9 16 1.9% $120,209
3 3 Acura » HMC 64.4 16 1.6% $120,209
4 11 Lexus » TM 61.6 17 0.9% $263,287
5 13 Subaru » FUJHY 58.6 19 -2.2% $15,747
6 5 Land Rover » F / Tata 58.5 17 0.3% $172,455
7 2 Saturn » GM 49.5 14 -0.5% $181,122
8 16 Jaguar » F / Tata 48.9 13 0.3% $172,455
9 18 Audi » VLKAY 47.5 17 -5.3%  
10 19 Toyota » TM 41.7 7 1.6% $263,287
11 25 Jeep » C.2 38.5 14 -5.7%  
12 17 Mercury » F 34.6 8 0.3% $172,455
13 7 Infiniti » NSANY 32.8 2 4.1%  
14 14 Nissan » NSANY 31.8 2 4.1%  
15 8 Saab » GM 27.9 7 -0.5% $181,122
16 9 Cadillac » GM 27.8 6 -0.5% $181,122
17 26 Volkswagen » VLKAY 27.3 8 -3.9%  
18 20 Mercedes-Benz » DAI 26.8 8 -4.0% $145,152
19 22 Dodge » C.2 25.2 8 -5.7%  
20 12 GMC » GM 21.8 3 -0.5% $181,122
21 24 Volvo » F 20.6 2 0.3% $172,455
22 10 Buick » GM 20.2 2 -0.5% $181,122
23 23 Lincoln » F 19.6 1 0.3% $172,455
24 6 Chevrolet » GM 19.1 -1 0.7% $181,122
25 21 Ford » F 18.2 0 0.3% $172,455
26 15 Pontiac » GM 17.6 1 -0.5% $181,122
27 27 Chrysler » C.2 15.6 5 -5.7%  
               
2008 2007 AUTO RETAILERS TICKER 2008
W Score
Total Moats 5-Yr EP 2007
REVENUES
1 2 AutoNation » AN 81.7 24 5.3% $17,692
2 1 AutoZone » AZO 72.6 10 23.9% $6,170
3 3 Advance Auto Parts » AAP 71.8 11 11.8% $4,844
4 4 CarMax » KMX 45.6 10 1.7% $8,319
5 4 Goodyear » GT 37.1 5 3.7% $19,644
6 7 Midas » MDS 33.8 6 2.0% $180
7 6 Pep Boys » PBY 16.7 6 -4.3% $2,138
               
2008 2007 GAS STATIONS TICKER 2008
W Score
Total Moats 5-Yr EP 2007
REVENUES
1 3 Marathon » MRO 72.6 10 13.2% $59,389
2 1 Mobil » XOM 72.4 8 19.6% $358,600
3 4 Valero » VLO 69.3 10 11.8% $94,526
4 2 Shell » RDS.A 63.1 8 11.1% $355,782
5 5 BP » BP 60.7 8 10.5% $284,365
6 10 Hess » HES 60.1 7 10.3% $31,711
7 8 Exxon » XOM 59.7 5 19.6% $358,600
8 11 ConocoPhillips » COP 59.3 8 8.9% $171,500
9 6 Sunoco » SUN 56.8 6 16.0% $41,843
10 7 Texaco » CVX 53.1 5 13.6% $214,091
11 9 Esso » XOM 52.1 2 19.6% $358,600
12 12 Chevron » CVX 46.2 1 13.6% $214,091
               
2008 2007 UTILITIES TICKER 2008
W Score
Total Moats 5-Yr EP 2007
REVENUES
1 1 BGE » CEG 68.2 13 4.1% $21,193
2 2 Southern Co. » SO 56.5 9 4.4% $15,353
3 7 Allegheny » AYE 47.3 10 1.5% $3,307
4 3 Entergy » ETR 47.1 7 4.2% $11,484
5 13 Reliant » RRI 40.8 12 -5.4% $11,209
6 6 Duke » DUK 39.4 8 0.9% $12,720
7 5 PG&E » PCG 38.9 5 4.5% $13,237
8 4 Florida P&L » FPL 37.4 7 3.4% $15,263
9 11 PSEG » PEG 35.9 2 5.6% $12,853
10 10 Sempra » SRE 35.4 3 4.3% $11,438
11 8 Progress Energy » PGN 33.5 5 2.4% $9,153
12 12 American Electric » AEP 32.6 4 3.0% $13,380
13 9 Dominion » D 29.7 2 3.4% $15,674

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THE C-SUITE AND wRATINGS
“Every time we would see our [W] ratings rise a point at ARAMARK, we’d subsequently see our revenue and market share increase as well.”
John J. Zillmer, Former EVP
ARAMARK Corporation
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