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Fortune Global 500

Updated on May 7, 2024
Article byPrakhar Gajendrakar
Edited byAshish Kumar Srivastav
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

What Is Fortune Global 500?

Fortune Global 500 is an yearly ranking list that ranks five hundred multinational corporations worldwide based on their reported annual revenue. Fortune Magazine publishes it along with other annual ranking lists. It publishes a similar ranking list called Fortune 500, which is restricted only to US corporations. Fortune Global 500 includes global conglomerates; hence, it is also referred to as Global 500.

Fortune Global 500

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The list is published annually and is a highly useful source of business information for world economies, global financial markets, and industry data, particularly relevant to investors and business analysts. The list has several global brands people are familiar with, as many use these products and services. The companies on this list are ranked per the reported revenue figures, and new entries are incorporated as and when new data emerges.

Key Takeaways

  • Fortune Global 500 lists the top five hundred global companies ranked by annual revenue.
  • The list is published by Fortune Magazine, a reputed business magazine with a long history of delivering quality output across business and finance journalism.
  • Based on their annual revenue, companies are given a rank or position on the list every year. They may be placed higher or lower on the list based on the revenue data gathered for companies around the world. Companies can also be replaced when new entries appear on the list.
  • It is not the only list that Fortune publishes; other formats include Global 1000, 40 Under 40, Fortune India 500, Unicorn List, etc.

Fortune Global 500 Explained

Fortune Global 500 lists world-class companies from different industries ranked per their annual revenues. The Fortune Magazine, known for top-notch journalism, publishes interviews, financial reports, and company profiles to offer readers business insight and information. The magazine collates, organizes, and publishes the Global 500 list every year.

The Fortune Global 500 makes business news available to readers and highlights global events that influence the world economy. Researchers studying global corporations and investors looking for profitable investment options refer to this list for insight and input. Fortune Magazine was founded by Henry Robinson Luce, who also co-founded the Time magazine. Initially, it only covered certain industries, such as manufacturing and mining, but its scope expanded with time.

Fortune Magazine publishes lists in different formats to recognize people, companies, and organizations for their potential, work, and contribution to the business and finance world. A company may appear on multiple lists but have different rankings based on the criteria set by the magazine. As for the Fortune Global 500, the annual revenue is the primary qualifying factor. It is a matter of prestige for companies to be featured on any Fortune Magazine list.

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History

Fortune Magazine is a well-known global business magazine. In 1955, editor Edgar Smith first proposed publishing a list of the most successful US companies, ranking them based on annual revenue. At first, the list was called Fortune Industrial 500, but later it was rechristened Fortune 500. Since then, the magazine has featured an annual list of successful companies in different formats every year.

In 1989, the magazine announced a new list that included companies outside the US, and the list became global. The same metric was employed to list companies globally, and they were ranked based on annual revenues. The list is not restricted to specific sectors and comprises private sector as well as public sector companies. Needless to say, the companies that feature on any of these lists are successful in their fields. They are listed on domestic stock exchanges in their respective countries and other important world markets.

Companies

The top 10 companies on the list of Fortune Global 500 in 2022 were:

CompanySector
WalmartRetail and Wholesale
AmazonTech and Online Retail
State GridEnergy
China National PetroleumEnergy
Sinopec GroupEnergy and Chemical
Saudi AramcoOil
AppleTech
VolkswagenAutomobile
China State Construction EngineeringReal Estate
CVS HealthHealthcare

Apart from these companies, 490 other global conglomerates feature on the list. It is a matter of great pride for any company to be ranked on the Fortune Global 500 or any other list published by Fortune Magazine. The list comprises companies from every sector and industry based on annual revenue. The names in the top 10 often remain the same, but their positions or ranks may change from one year to another.

How To Buy Stock In A Fortune 500 Company?

There are two ways to invest in a Fortune Global 500 company. The first is buying stocks directly from the stock exchange. Almost every Fortune 500 company is publicly listed on respective stock exchanges, and investors can purchase stocks for short-term and long-term investments. Most companies are listed on multiple markets, which also benefits investors.

The second way to invest in Fortune 500 companies is through Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and index funds that invest in these corporations. A wide range of low-cost index funds and ETFs are available in the market, such as:

  • iShares Core S&P 500 ETF
  • Fidelity 500 Index Fund
  • Vanguard S&P 500 Index Fund ETF
  • Schwab S&P 500 Index Fund
  • SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust

If investors want to invest in stocks not listed on domestic stock exchanges, they can avail themselves of the services of online platforms investing in NYSE or NASDAQ.

Examples

Here are two real-world examples of Fortune Global 500 companies.

Example #1

Korea International Trade Association and Korea Development Bank organized the Fortune 500 Open Innovation Roundtable on June 2, 2023, where the top 10 global players talked about the challenges coming up in the global business market. They also discussed how the United States has become a hub of technological innovations as it explores the field of biometrics and artificial intelligence.

The agenda of this meeting was to invite the Fortune Global 500 companies to share their growth hacks and strategies with the Korean startups so that they too pave their path toward becoming a remarkable business entity and make it to the Fortune Global 500 list in the future.

Example #2

The Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) was on the list of Fortune Global 500 for 2022. The company had just been listed on the stock market in India. LIC, a reputable life insurance company in India, generated a revenue of $97.26 billion with a profit of $553.8 million. It ranked 98th on the 2022 list. LIC was featured on this list for the first time in 2022.

Another noteworthy change was seen in 2022. The revenue from Greater China, including Taiwan, surpassed the revenue posted by companies in the US by 31%. According to Fortune, the post-pandemic period offered a great impetus to many global companies, resulting in higher revenue generation.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is the difference between Fortune Global 500 and Fortune 500 companies?

The key difference between Fortune Global 500 and Fortune 500 is that the former is a list that includes companies from around the world. The latter only includes companies based in the United States. Therefore, Fortune Global 500 has a broader scope.

2. How many US companies are on the Fortune Global 500 list?

Per the 2022 Fortune Global 500 list, around 124 US companies made it to the list. After 2019, it is the third time in a row that China surpassed the US in terms of the number of companies included on the list. In 2022, a total of 136 Chinese companies made it to the Fortune 500 Global list.

3. Is the Fortune Global 500 better than the Fortune 500?

From the perspective of global industries and world business news and data, Fortune Global 500 offers more information than Fortune 500 because it ranks companies around the world by annual revenues. However, if a researcher is interested in only exploring companies in the US, Fortune 500 will serve them better.

This article has been a guide to What Is Fortune Global 500. We explain the companies featured on the list and how to buy their stocks, its history, and examples. You may also find some useful articles here –

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