Apple Is Nowhere Close To Being The Biggest Company

Last week, Apple made headlines when its market valuation made it the most valued company in the world. What this meant was that investors thought that Apple was worth more than the oil companies, banks and tech giants that have the highest market capitalizations. However, that is just one measure of how big a company is: so how does Apple fare in other measures? Ars Technica addressed this issue back in February and here’s what they found:

  • By enterprise value, which is what another company would have to pay to buy them, Apple was 4th behind GE, Exxon and PetroChina
  • By cash balance, Apple was 82nd, a good dozen spots behind both Google and Microsoft, and really far behind the banks that were in the top five: Deutsche Bank, which was #1, had 974 billion$ to Apple’s 25 B$.
  • By asset value, which is all the physical stuff a company owns, Apple was 931st, again well behind Google and Microsoft. The top spot went to Electricite de France, which had 185 B$ in assets to Apple’s 6 B$.
  • By revenue — actual money they make from sales — Apple was 78th with 76 B$, beating Microsoft and wiping the floor with Google, but being dwarfed by Walmart and its 419 B$ revenues.
  • By cash flow, a.k.a. profits, Apple was 51st, close on Microsoft’s heels and way ahead of Google, but the top company in this category, Barclay’s, had about seven times as much cash flow. The other top companies were also banks.
  • By number of employees, Apple was 460th with 46,600 employees. Walmart again won with 2,100,000.

So Apple is only the biggest company by one measure and close by on a second, but falls way short on the other five. The article goes on to point out that if Walmart were to disappear overnight, the country would be crushed — not only by losing a lot of paychecks to employees, construction workers and maintenance personnel, but by the poor losing the ability to get cheap stuff. On the other hand, if Apple were to disappear, nothing significant would happen.

From Ars Technica, via Slashdot

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  1. The Complete History Of Siri | Apartment 46 - pingback on February 19, 2013 at 5:22 am

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