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August 5, 2023

Walmart tops the FORTUNE 500 GLOBAL List for the 10th Consecutive Year.

Fortune Global 2023

NEW YORK, August 5, 2023 — Fortune has announced that Walmart, a U.S.-based retailer, has topped the 2023 Fortune Global 500 list, which ranks the world’s largest corporations by revenue for fiscal year 2022. It marks Walmart’s 10th consecutive year and 18th time since 1995, claiming the number one spot on the authoritative ranking of the current corporate world order. There has been a surge in the number of U.S. companies on the Global 500 this year, reaching its highest total since 2010 at 136 companies, which is the highest for a stand-alone country.

The strength of the global energy sector was evident as Saudi Aramco almost beat Walmart in the rankings. Saudi Aramco (No. 2) benefited from soaring energy prices caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which also propelled Exxon Mobil (No. 7) and Shell (No. 9) back into the top 10 by revenue. Saudi Aramco earned $159 billion in profits, the highest ever for any Fortune Global 500 company.

Big Tech continued to be a robust and profitable sector. Apple, Alphabet, and Microsoft generated $233 billion in net income, with Apple (No. 8) earning nearly $100 billion in profits, the most ever by a U.S. company.

There were 39 newcomers to this year’s Fortune Global 500, including 23 companies making their debut, such as Warner Bros. Discovery (No. 449) and the first-time Chinese companies Contemporary Amperex Technology (No. 292) and Meituan (No. 467). Sixteen companies returned to the list after at least a one-year hiatus, such as Colombia’s Ecopetrol (No. 397) and France’s Air Liquide (No. 488).

By geography, Chinese companies, including mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, top this year’s Global 500 with 142 companies. However, the 136 U.S. companies generated more revenue in 2022 than Greater China’s $11.7 trillion, with $13 trillion. An economic slump, tighter regulations, and the lingering impact of COVID restrictions in mainland China affected revenue at consumer-facing companies such as Alibaba (No. 68), Tencent (No. 147), and (No. 52).

The top ten on the Fortune Global 500 list are:

  1. Walmart (U.S.)
  2. Saudi Aramco (Saudi Arabia)
  3. State Grid (China)
  4. (U.S.)
  5. China National Petroleum (China)
  6. Sinopec (China)
  7. Exxon Mobil (U.S.)
  8. Apple (U.S.)
  9. Shell (Britain)
  10. UnitedHealth Group (U.S.)

The Fortune Global 500 companies have generated revenues of $41 trillion, which comprises more than one-third of the world’s GDP. It reflects an increase of 8% compared to the previous year, while the cumulative profits have decreased by 7% to $2.9 trillion. These companies are located in 232 cities and 33 countries/territories worldwide, employing 70.1 million people. The number of Fortune Global 500 women CEOs has increased from 24 to 29 this year.

The complete Global 500 list is available in FORTUNE’s August/September issue. The editor-in-chief, Alyson Shontell, notes that this year’s list has a theme of upending and dethroning even the largest companies in the world. Walmart, the world’s largest company by revenue for the past decade, is being challenged by Saudi Aramco, which has had a banner year due to the Ukraine war’s impact on oil and gas prices. The Saudi government is investing its profits in green-tech R&D and other industries.

The issue also highlights how Alphabet (No. 17) faces an innovator’s dilemma due to generative A.I. According to Shontell, Alphabet’s Google is threatened by this revolutionary technology that could impact the search business that has fueled its profit-making machine since the 2000s. Microsoft (No. 30) is the No. 1 Threatener because it partnered with ChatGPT creator OpenAI. Shontell suggests that whoever builds the best mousetrap in generative A.I. could transform how the world searches for information.

The Fortune Global 500 list editor, Scott DeCarlo, notes that the corporations on the list have shown their muscle in 2022, delivering record-high revenue and profits. However, technological change and scientific breakthroughs threaten established leaders and elevate emerging new winners.

Source: Fortune Media (USA) Corporation

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 12:26 PM | Link to this Post

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