Did you know that the revenue of Fortune 500 companies equals 71,9% of total U.S. GDP?
The Fortune 500 list consists of the largest U.S. companies ranked by their gross revenue. It is regarded as the iconic measure of business success and generates worldwide recognition for companies that find themselves on it. The list comes out annually and 2015 one brings some impressive data, which we will share with you in this post.
If you prefer visually presented data, go straight to our infographic by clicking here!
In 2014, The Fortune 500 companies accounted for:
– 12,5 trillion dollars in revenues
– 945 billion dollars in profits
– 17 trillion dollars in market value
– 26,8 million people employed worldwide
Most fascinating of all? The high turnover of the companies on the list.
Wouldn’t you think that the success and profitability of these companies would surely guarantee their presence on the list in the years to come? Well, I would, and I would be wrong.
If we compare Fortune 500 list from 1955 (the first one ever) and 2015, we see that 57% of companies listed initially are no longer there. Fifty years ago, the life expectancy of Fortune 500 companies was 75 years, today that number is down to lowly 15% and the trend is showing signs of further decline.
There are many speculations behind it, the most prominent being the rapid technological development and challenges that go with it.
When asked about the biggest challenges related to running their business, CEOs themselves placed the rapid pace of technological innovation on the number one spot. Most importantly, in the same survey, 94% of CEOs responded that they expect their company to change more in the next five years than in the past five.
The Age of Unicorns
Technological development led to the rise of unconventional and innovative companies that caused the disruption of many industries. Just think of Facebook, SnapChat, and even Slack, all companies that fundamentally changed the way we communicate, in our private lives and in business. These rapidly expanding startup companies achieved what was previously considered a really silly dream – exceeding the market valuation of $1 billion, based on their funding.
The sheer impossibility of what they achieved has let to these startups being called “unicorns”. The term was coined by Aileen Lee of Cowboy Ventures who in 2012 shared her company’s findings related to these startups, estimating that 4 unicorns were born per year over the past decade.
This January Fortune decided to publish the first Unicorn list, identifying more than 80 startup companies that fit the definition, including 8 “decacorns” with a market valuation of more than $10 billion. Most successful of them are:
– Xiaomi $46,0 B
– Uber $41,2 B
– Airbnb $20,0 B
In the article announcing this year’s Fortune 500 list, Allan Murray, editor of Fortune Magazine, shared that one of the questions they are facing is should Global 500 replace Fortune 500 as their flagship. After all, technological development displaced where U.S. companies manufacture and sell their products by breaking down geographical barriers.
Did you know that Visa and Facebook, Fortune Global 500 companies, chose .ME to showcase the personal side of their business? Check out v.me and fb.me!
As consulting company McKinsey & Co notes, emerging markets are changing where and how the world does business. In a time when the developed world shows signs of slowing, these markets are starting to capitalize on their increasingly skilled labor and the emergence of more prosperous customers. McKinsey forecasts that by 2025, nearly half of The Fortune Global 500 companies will come from emerging markets.
No matter what is decided, we will continue to follow the development of these companies and be fascinated by their fate. Because who better to learn how to surf the waves of change than from those who do it each and every day and come out as victors.