NEW YORK — Walmart tops the Fortune Global 500 list for 2023, ranking the world’s largest corporations by revenue for fiscal 2022. On Fortune’s authoritative ranking of the (current) corporate world order, the Arkansas-based retailer claimed No. 1 for the 10th consecutive year and for the 18th time since 1995. Walmart joins a spike in the number of U.S. companies on the Global 500 this year, reaching its highest total since 2010 at 136 companies, which is also the highest for a stand-alone country.
The strength of the global energy sector was dramatically clear as Saudi Aramco nearly knocked the retail Goliath from its perch. Saudi Aramco (No. 2) benefited from soaring energy prices—fueled by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—that also propelled Exxon Mobil (No. 7) and Shell (No. 9) back into the top 10 by revenue. In profits, Saudi Aramco earned $159 billion, the highest annual total ever for a Fortune Global 500 company.
Big Tech, meanwhile, proved it also remains a robust and profitable sector. Together, Apple, Alphabet, and Microsoft brought in $233 billion in net income, with Apple (No. 8) earning just short of $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), plus first time Chinese companies, Contemporary Amperex Technology (No. 292) and Meituan (No. 467).
There are 16 companies returning to the list after at least a one-year hiatus, such as Colombia’sEcopetrol (No. 397) and France’s Air Liquide (No. 488).
By geography, Chinese companies in total – Greater China: mainland China including Hong Kong, and adding Taiwan – top this year’s Global 500 with 142 companies. But the 136 U.S. companies generated more revenue in 2022—$13 trillion to Greater China’s $11.7 trillion. An economic slump, tighter regulation, and the lingering impact of COVID restrictions in mainland China hurt revenue at consumer-facing companies such as Alibaba (No. 68), Tencent (No. 147), and JD.com (No. 52).
THE 2023 FORTUNE GLOBAL 500 TOP 10 LIST:
- Walmart (U.S.)
- Saudi Aramco (Saudi Arabia)
- State Grid (China)
- Amazon.com (U.S.)
- China National Petroleum (China)
- Sinopec (China)
- Exxon Mobil (U.S.)
- Apple (U.S.)
- Shell (Britain)
- UnitedHealth Group (U.S.)
Fortune Global 500 companies generated revenues totaling $41 trillion—more than one-third of the world’s GDP—for an increase of 8% over last year. Cumulative profits were down 7% from last year at $2.9 trillion. Companies on the 2023 list employ 70.1 million people worldwide and are based in 232 cities and 33 countries/territories and regions around the world. The number of women CEOs of Fortune Global 500 companies rose to 29 this year, from 24 last year.
The complete Global 500 appears in the August/September issue of Fortune magazine, and is available here.