Most of the business press and financial news focuses our attention on public companies. Because they are public, information on those companies is easy to find and they issues all forms of communications to keep up their visibility. Private companies are private for a reason and they do make that much information avaialble. It all makes sense.

Consequently, database builders and internal CRM systems often do not contain many private companies. That may be a mistake.  Looking at The Global 5000 companies, 14% of them are private companies …. these are billion $ companies and often solid prospect. Many of these companies are smaller as the total revenue for private companies in The Global 5000 is 8% or $3.4 trillion out of the total of $42.2 trillion for all Global 5000 companies.

The larger private companies stack up well next to their public counterparts.  If we take the Top 50 publics and Top 50 privates, the private company revenue is approximately 25% of the public companies. Beyond the Global 5000, the rest of the companies are almost exclusively privates.  Anyone looking at small and medium businesses (SMB) is well tuned in to the world of private companies.

Here is a sample of the top private companies in the world (by revenue)

  • Glencore International AG
  • Cargill
  • Koch Industries
  • REWE Group
  • ALDI Einkauf GmbH
  • U.S. Postal Service
  • Robert Bosch 
  • Reliance Industries Limited
  • Groupe Auchan
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • China FAW (First Automotive Works)
  • Chrysler LLC
  • Lotte Holdings
  • SNCF
  • Spar International