Defined as any firm’s total value of outstanding shares, market capitalization is one of the quickest ways investors determine the overall market value of a company in terms of investing. Globally here are the 20 companies that top the list of market caps that have crossed and maintained over $100 billion.
20. PetroChina Co Ltd
In the US, not many necessarily think of China when it comes to gasoline, yet China has some of the largest petroleum companies in the world. PetroChina is China’s biggest oil producer to date and has been up and down this billion-dollar list for many years. It continues to dominate the Asian market when it comes to gas. It is traded both in New York and Hong Kong. It is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading companies, even though it is mostly only profitable in the Asian market. Since it went public, PetroChina has had multiple deals with companies from other nations with its shares continuing to be on the rise partly as a result of their smart investments. PetroChina’s most recent reported market cap was at $239 billion, and while it is last on this list, PetroChina has been known to climb up to the top 10 from time to time.
19. Nestle S.A.
The popular company is one of the oldest companies in this list. It was founded in Switzerland in1866 as primarily a milk company. Since then, Nestle has grown into a transnational food and drink household name; its logo dominating grocery shelves worldwide. It continues to grow internationally and has developed research into other fields including skin health, nutrition, pet care, and many others. Nestle currently has an impressive array of more than 8,000 brands in the markets mentioned and many others. The company has a market cap of $249 billion. It is listed and traded on the SIX Swiss Exchange and Euronext and is a constituent of the Swiss Market Index. Nestle boasts its longevity on this list, which is a large testament to how successful this company has been and will continue to be.
18. Royal Dutch Shell Plc
The British-Dutch company is one of the most recognizable oil and gas companies in the world. It’s considered to be the 6th largest oil company globally based on revenue alone. It’s recognized in the US as the Shell Oil Company, which is one of its biggest markets. With a market cap of $267 at the close of December 2017, the Royal Dutch Shell Plc holds one of the highest market caps where it’s listed on the London Stock Exchange. The company is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. Shell is very active in the oil and gas industry. With operations in more than 70 countries worldwide, the company continues to explore the future of its industry in renewable energy, transportation, power generation, petrochemicals, and more. Their symbol, the pecten, is also one of the most famous company logos in history.
17. Visa Inc
Anywhere you go in the world and no matter what type of establishment you go into, chances are you’ll encounter the Visa logo at some point to make a transaction. Visa Inc. is the first American company on this list and has been the biggest influencer in the business of fund transfers. The company processes billions of financial transactions worldwide each year with operations throughout the globe except for Antarctica. All these transactions are processed in either one of two secure facilities in the US. The original company went through a restructuring in 2006, when it went public after undergoing through some mergers. It is primarily traded on the New York Stock Exchange and uses “V” as its ticker symbol. By the end of 2017, Visa Inc.’s market cap was at $274 billion, an impressive feat for a company that falls second to China UnionPay. Visa Inc. holds the upper hand when it comes to the western market.
16. Wells Fargo & Company
American company Wells Fargo is considered to be the world’s second largest bank. Matter of fact, it is the only bank that operates even in the most remote continent of Antarctica. It’s continued to climb the banking charts, topping it in 2015 but only to fall behind after the largely publicized fraud scandal involving Wells Fargo employees back in 2016. Since then, the company has worked to reverse the effects of the scandal, and despite of it, Wells Fargo still remains to be one of the most respected companies in the world according to Forbes. It’s last reported market cap of $295 billion is a testament to the company’s overall reputation, especially since they have over 70 million clients globally. The company trades in the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker WFC and is a constituent of the S&P 500 and S&P 100 as well.
15. Walmart Inc.
There’s possibly not one American store that is more famous than Walmart. Founded and incorporated in 1962, this multinational corporation has influenced the retail and grocery industries like no other. Walmart’s unique business approach literally changed the game. To this day, Walmart still holds the title of being the world’s largest company by revenue, beating its competitors by a huge margin of at least $150 billion. The success of the company is obvious in North America and in some of its other investments, including China and the UK, but the investments of the company in other nations have also been unsuccessful. Walmart continues to evolve its structure, especially with the emergence of newer mega businesses in the online industry such as Amazon. Its market cap was last reported at $310 billion, as it is traded as WMT in the NYSE. It is a constituent of the DOW, S&P 500, and S&P 100.
14. Samsung Electronics Company Ltd.
This South Korean multinational electronics company is the biggest competitor of America’s Apple. Samsung has been around since 1969 and has continued to not only dominate the Asian market but thrive in the western market as well. The difference is that Samsung manufactures more than just handheld devices and computer technology. The company manufactures a wide range of products from batteries to cameras, televisions to hard drives, and semiconductors to memory chips. In fact, it surpassed Intel last year to become the largest chip manufacturer in the world. And of course, they sell some of the best smartphones available today. Apart from these, Samsung is also currently developing new satellite technology alongside OneWeb and SpaceX to improve Internet data management. Samsung Electronics had a reported market cap of $314 billion by the end of last year.
Primarily traded in the New York Stock Exchange, ExxonMobil’s market cap as of the end of 2017 is at $324 billion. Compared to many on this list, ExxonMobil is quite young at being only 18 years. The company is the result of the 1999 merger of two big American oil companies, Exxon and Mobil. This merger has also created what is considered today to be the world’s largest big oil “supermajor” when it comes to production, producing close to 4 million barrels of oil equivalent daily worldwide. They are also the 10th largest company by revenue globally. That being said, the reputation of the company doesn’t always reflect their financial success. ExxonMobil has repeatedly been criticized in the past for their stance against the scientific research on global warming and all results that point to fossil fuel burning as one of the main causes. The company continues to lobby for climate change denial.
12. Bank of America
One of the “big four” in the US when it comes to banking, Bank of America is also the world’s largest wealth management corporation. The company actually started its journey 113 years ago when it opened under the name Bank of Italy to help immigrants with their financial needs. The name Bank of America was established in 1930 and has remained since even through various acquisitions and mergers. Bank of America has been the subject of multiple lawsuits and investigations, particularly involving mortgage fraud. The company focuses on consumer banking, which is their largest division, and they have divisions that manage global markets and wealth management. The company is traded under the ticker BAC in the NYSE and is a constituent of the S&P 500 and S&P 100. It’s last reported market cap was at $328 billion.
11. China Construction Bank Corp
Speaking of the “big four,” China has their own list, and China Construction Bank, or CCB, is one of their “big four” banks. At one point in 2015, the bank was considered to be the 2nd largest in the world by market cap. CCB’s latest market cap was at $334 billion by the end of December 2017. Most of its business is in China, but CCB in more than 10 cities worldwide, including New York, Tokyo, Seoul, Barcelona, Frankfurt, and a few others. Founded in 1954 in Beijing, CCB offers a wide variety of financial products including consumer and corporate banking, investment banking and management, global wealth management, mortgages, insurance, private equity, and credit cards. The company is slowly expanding internationally with offices now in London, New York, and Luxembourg. With a market cap at $334 billion, CCB shares are traded under the Shanghai Stock Exchange, Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
10. Johnson & Johnson
Johnson & Johnson, one of the leading consumer product manufacturers in the world, had its start as a humble medical product manufacturer in the late 1880s. Since then, the company has expanded to manufacture various other medical devices, pharmaceutical goods, and many other consumer goods that we’re all familiar with today. The logo of Johnson & Johnson has stayed close to the original logo when the company was founded, and it is one of the most widely recognized logos globally. They sell their products to more than 175 countries, operating over 250 companies under the Johnson & Johnson umbrella. $357 billion was the company’s market cap value as of December of 2017, and the company begins the top 10 of this list. Johnson & Johnson is traded in the NYSE, with components in the Dow, S&P 500, and S&P 100.
9. Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, or ICBC, is one of China’s big four banks. It also happens to be the largest bank globally considering total assets, which have been reported to be about US$ 3.616 trillion as of 2015. This bank tops many other lists including World Bank rankings and Forbes Global 2000. In 2006, it had the world’s largest IPO. Founded just 34 years ago in 1984, the company has grown exponentially, starting with markets mostly in Asia and Europe and eventually expanding into the US and the Middle East. Matter of fact, ICBC was the first Chinese bank to set up operations in the Middle East. ICBC is also known for being the first Chinese bank to accept environmental standards for financial institutions as set forth by the Equator Principles. The company’s last reported market cap was valued at $386 billion.
8. JPMorgan Chase & Co
The largest bank in the US, JPMorgan Chase also happens to be 6th largest bank in the world when it comes to assets. The company was a result of a merger between two US banking companies, Chase Manhattan Corporation and J.P. Morgan & Co in 2000. However, the original company—Bank of the Manhattan Company—was founded 218 years ago in 1799. Before the merger, each bank had its own acquisitions. After the merger, JPMorgan Chase had a few large acquisitions including Bank One, Bear Stearns, and Washington Mutual. The institution offers a multitude of financial services that range from consumer banking to asset management, commercial banking, commodity trading, investment management, hedge fudge management, and many more. In the US, JPMorgan Chase has five main subsidiaries. The company also has operations in Europe that deals mostly in asset management, investments, and private banking. JPMorgan Chase is traded in the NYSE and has a current market cap value at $392 billion.
7. Berkshire Hathaway
CEO Warren Buffet of Berkshire Hathaway is one of the biggest names in the history of investments. Berkshire Hathaway is a conglomerate holding company and is considered to be the ninth largest in the world considering revenue. Berkshire Hathaway owns many other brands and companies that are familiar to the average person. Some of these include Fruit of the Loom, Dairy Queen, GEICO, and Helzberg Diamonds. They are also partial partners with The Coca-Cola Company, American Express, Pilot Flying J, Wells Fargo, and Apple. It’s quite costly to get Berkshire Hathaway shares, with each one costing about $300,000. It is currently the world’s seventh largest company in the S&P 500 index according to market cap value. Berkshire Hathaway’s last reported market cap is at $503 billion. The company continues to thrive under the direction of Buffet, but the succession plans have been order and the future of the company will be in good hands.
6. Facebook Inc.
Once in a while, a company comes about that completely changes the culture of the world. Facebook is one of those companies. In a matter of 14 years since CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his group founded it in 2004, Facebook has changed the way we communicate and interact with each other. Facebook is the only purely social media and networking service on this list. Another interesting factor to this company is the fact that most of its revenue comes mainly from advertising that can be seen on its pages. As difficult that may be to imagine, it can be put into context by simply stating that the website reached 1 billion active users in 2012. Facebook continues to expand and grow its reach every day. Its current market cap is valued at $515 billion, an impressive feat for a company not even 15 years old.
5. Tencent Holdings Ltd
The world’s biggest investment corporation, Tencent Holdings is also China’s largest investment holding conglomerate. Founded in 1998, the company’s subsidiaries are focused on technology and Internet related services and products. Some of these services and products include music, e-commerce, mobile games, social networks, and web portals. It’s considered to be the most valuable company in Asia, with a reported market cap value at $542 from December 2017. This number has gone up and down this list, sometimes ranking second or even topping it completely.
4. Amazon.com Inc.
If there’s any company that has grown exponentially in its time, it’ll be Amazon. Starting out as a humble online bookseller, Amazon has grown into the largest online marketplace in the world. It’s involvement in electronic commerce is ever- evolving, as Amazon now offers streaming video and music services as well. You can literally buy anything from Amazon.com, but the company isn’t stopping there when it comes to services. Amazon has implemented unconventional delivery options, opportunities for small-scale entrepreneurs to grow their businesses, and even subscription packages for children. Founded by Jeff Bezos in 1994, Amazon started off in his home garage. It has now grown into multiple subsidiaries and has acquired several companies, including Goodreads, Audible, and Whole Foods. Bezos also owns several other companies on his own. The company has undergone tremendous scrutiny for alleged poor working conditions for its employee. However, Amazon remains to be on top of their game, valued with a $701 market cap as of December of 2017.
3. Microsoft Corp
Bill Gates is a living legend for many. Gates and Paul Allen founded Microsoft in 1975, about 42 years ago, and it’s still as innovative as it was back then. Microsoft has managed to stay in the technology game all these years. The multinational tech company offers products and services that are in line with computers. Considered as one of the world’s most valuable companies, Microsoft is also the world’s largest software maker as of 2016. The Windows OS is one of the most famous and most used operating systems globally. The company has had several acquisitions in the past, including Nokia and the video game development company that created the famous Minecraft game, Mojang. The company’s market cap is valued at $708 billion, and it hardly leaves the top 3 of this market cap list.
2. Alphabet Inc
Formerly known as Google, Alphabet Inc has gone a recent restructuring to streamline its services even more. Alphabet, what was once just a technology service offering search engine results, is now a multinational conglomerate that has a variety of subsidiaries. The company has expanded since its founding as Google 1998, and it now offers services in several other industries including life science, investment capitalism, and research. Even with the arrival of many search engines over the years, many have stuck through with Google. Nowadays, Google is not just that anymore. Alphabet has become a collection of several companies with Google being the largest among them all. Since Alphabet was created 2 years ago, it has had a few successful acquisitions including a small startup called Redux. Redux has had a huge impact on Google’s first smartphone release, the Pixel. Alphabet’s market cap value was $761 billion at the end of December 2017.
1. Apple Inc
And finally, the top of the list is an absolute no brainer. This particular tech company has been the influencer and game changer in the industry for many years now, possibly from the get go. Apple has been setting the bar in technology when it comes to mobile devices and personal computing devices since Jobs, Wozniak, and Wayne founded the company in 1976. Since then, it’s continued to dominate the industry. By revenue, it’s considered to be the world’s largest information tech company. Fans of Apple are extremely loyal to the brand and are willing to fork out relatively higher costs to obtain their products. Time and again, Apple has been ranked as the world’s most valuable brand. The company now offers even more services and products that have innovation stamped all across them. The iPhone has forever revolutionized the mobile communications industry, and Apple continues to push the envelope when it comes to innovation. As of December 2017, Apple’s market cap was at an impressive $876 billion USD, topping this impressive list of companies that have crossed the $100 billion dollar market cap line.