Forbes has released its annual list of the top 500 companies in the U.S. ranked by revenue, and a number of technology manufacturers or providers managed to be included. General Electric was the first tech company to be ranked in the top ten at number six, with $147-billion in revenue, followed by Hewlett-Packard at number 10 with revenue of Hewlett-Packard $127-billion.
While the Forbes Top 500 focuses on companies within the United States, the picture is slightly different when compared to the top tech companies from around the globe – most of whom have a presence in Africa.
1. Samsung Electronics
It’s really no surprise that Samsung is in the top position, as it recently took the crown away from Apple as the manufacturer who has sold the most mobile units. By the end of 2011, Samsung’s annual revenue was sitting pretty at $142-billion. Founded in 1969 in South Korea, the company currently employs over 160 000 workers.
Samsung has a presence in Africa at www.samsung.co.za
2. Hewlett-Packard (HP)
Hewlett-Packard is one of the leading brands when it comes to Ultrabooks and Personal Computers, and made it into the second position by the end of 2011 with annual revenues of $127-billion – only $6-billion less than Samsung. HP has more than 300 000 workers, and is spearheaded by CEO Meg Whitman. Hewlett-Packard made it into the 10th position on the Forbes list with $7-billion in profits.
Samsung has a presence in Africa at www.hp.co.za
The American Telephone and Telegraph Company made it into 11th place on the Forbes list, but occupies the number three spot in the list of top tech companies. With annual revenues of $126-billion, it’s hot on the heels of HP, and boasts a workforce of over 294 000.
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT) is a Japanese-based telecommunications company headquartered in Tokyo. It makes the number four spot with annual revenues of $124-billion – only a fraction more than its closest competitor. With 219 300 workers, it’s the tech company with the 11th largest workforce.
The second Japanese company on our rankings, the company focuses on Information and Telecommunication Systems, Electrical Systems, Social and Industrial Systems, Automotive Systems, Electronic Component Devices, Construction, and Financial services. They posted revenues of $112-billion, and Hitachi boasts a workforce of over 400 000 employees across the globe.
Hitachi has a presence in Africa at www.hitachi.co.za
6. Apple Inc.
Ranked 17th on the Forbes list and 6th on a global tech scale, the iPhone maker has steadily been losing its position as the number one mobile phone manufacturer. The California-based tech giant reported annual revenues of $108-billion at the end of 2011.
Apple has a presence in Africa at www.core.co.za
New York-based International Business Machines (IBM) is ranked 7th gloablly with annual revenues of $106-billion at the end of 2011. Founded by Thomas J. Watson in 1896, the company has a workforce of almost 400 000 workers. Samuel J. Palmisano is currently the Chairman and CEO, and IBM made $15-billion in profit last year.
IBM has a presence in Africa at www.ibm.co.za
American broadband and telecommunications company Verizon posted revenues of $106-billion to be placed in 8th position globally. The company made $2,4-billion in profits and boasts a workforce of over 190 000, which is headed up by Lowell McAdam, Chairman and CEO. The company originally started trading in 1983 as Bell Atlantic, but in 2000 Bell Atlantic acquired former independent phone company GTE and changed the name to Verizon.
Electronics manufacturer Panasonic is the second to last company on the top ten list of tech companies with annual revenues of $105-billion. Based in Japan, the company employs 384 000 workers. Founded in 1918, the electronics maker is now run by Konosuke Matsushita, co-founder and Kunio Nakamura as Chairman.
Panasonic has a presence in Africa at www.panasonic.co.za
German multinational conglomerate Siemens is the 10th company with the highest annual revenues for 2011, posting a total of $98-billion. Founded in 1847 by Werner von Siemens in Berlin, Siemens now has a global workforce of over 360 000 and elected Peter Löscher as President and CEO.
Siemens has a presence in Africa at www.siemens.co.za
Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor