10 Biggest Media Companies In The World

By Alice Chen on March 11 2020 in Economics

Disney owns Marvel, Pixar, and Lucasfilm. Photo by Travis Gergen on Unsplash
Disney owns Marvel, Pixar, and Lucasfilm. Photo by Travis Gergen on Unsplash
  • AT&T is the world's largest media company.
  • The Walt Disney Company was founded in 1923.
  • Charter Communications is the second-largest cable operator in the US.

Media companies are a huge part of the modern entertainment landscape. As they are responsible for mass media productions on platforms like television, radio, publishing, movies, and the Internet, most people come in contact with their work on a daily basis whether they realize it or not. In today's increasingly monopolized world, mass media conglomerates are becoming more common. These groups are typically massive companies that own numerous other companies that are involved in media production. Many of the most popular works out there today owe their existence to these media institutions. This list will run down the ten biggest of these media corporations, based on 2018 revenue figures. 

10. Sony Entertainment

Kaz Hirai is the current chairman of Sony Entertainment. Image credit: wikipedia.com

This global entertainment company is a subsidiary of the larger Japanese Sony Corporation. Its focus is primarily on Sony's television, movie, and music businesses. The huge company employs 18,000 people and the companies that are a part of its large wingspan include Columbia Pictures, Califon Productions, and Epic Records. The current chairman is Kaz Hirai. Under his leadership, the corporation doesn't appear to be slowing down any time soon. 

9. Apple Inc.

Apple creates original content for Apple TV+. Image credit: wikimedia.org

Next on the list is the American multinational technology company Apple Inc. Their involvement with media is not their main focus, but as they have a streaming TV service they, along with the massive amounts of revenue they pull in, technically fall under the umbrella of a media company. More generally Apple is considered one of the big four technology companies, reigning supreme alongside Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. 

8. News Corp. Ltd. / 21st Century Fox

21st Century is now owned by Disney. Image credit: youtube.

This company was originally a single mass media corporation owned and run by media mastermind Rupert Murdoch. However, in 2013 it split to form two companies, one focused on media and the other focused on publishing. For the purposes of this list, the company of focus is 21st Century Fox, which consisted of the numerous media outlets previously owned by News Corp. In total, It made over $37 billion USD of revenue in 2018. Murdoch sold 21st Century Fox to Disney in 2017 for $71.3 billion.

7. Charter Comm. Inc.

Spectrum provides its products to over 26 million customers. Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

Charter Communications is a publically traded company that was founded by Barry Babcock, Jerald Kent, and Howard Wood in 1993. It serves 41 states in the US, providing services like broadband, cable television, and internet utilities. It technically goes under the branding of Spectrum and provides its products to over 26 million customers, making it the second-largest cable operator in the US. 

6. Tencent Holdings

Tecent is one of the world's most valuable technology companies. Image credit: wikimedia.org

This Chinese-based conglomerate includes work in the fields of social media, search engines, and mass media, among the many industries that it has involvement with. Its services are focused on both China and the international landscape as a whole, and it has seen massive commercial success, ranking as the world's largest video game company and one of the world's most valuable technology companies.  

5. Facebook, Inc.

Facebook is a leading social media site. Image credit: wikimedia.org

Facebook is a social media site that just about everyone in the world is familiar with. This juggernaut of a technology company includes numerous branches into the world of media, such as its news programming and the many bits of media that filter through its social channels. It's also a company that has come under fire for its involvement in the proliferation of misleading information, but even so, it doesn't appear to be disappearing any time soon.  

4. The Walt Disney Company

Disney was founded in 1923. Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

This is another massive company that is basically a household name in many regions of the world. The name Disney itself conjures up images of theme parks, songs, and princesses of all shapes and colors. The company also keeps growing as it acquires numerous other renowned film studios like Marvel and Pixar. It is also one of the longest-running corporations on the list, with an original founding date all the way back in 1923.    

3. Comcast

Comcast owns Universal Pictures. Image credit: Photo by Justin Lim on Unsplash

As this list progresses the companies naturally become huger and huger. Comcast is no exception as this 57-year-old corporation has its fingers in all kinds of work. As a telecommunications conglomerate, it provides cable television and broadband services, among others, to millions of people. It also owns and operates various television channels like NBC and MSNBC, and the film studio Universal Pictures.  

2. Alphabet Inc.

YouTube gives Google diversification into media. Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash

Alphabet Inc. is more commonly known as the parent company of global tech giant Google. This multinational conglomerate allows Google to focus more on its search engine and software while also acting as an umbrella company to various other former Google subsidiaries. While the group's main focus remains in software and technology development, the constantly growing ad revenue of YouTube gives it a diversification into media. 

1. AT&T

AT&T owns WarnerMedia. Photo by Lena Rose on Unsplash

AT&T is another giant business force that has tendrils into the industries of telecommunications, technology, mass media, and entertainment. It is an American multinational company headquartered in the looming Whitacre Tower in Dallas, Texas, and its reputation similarly looms large as the world's biggest telecommunications company. Importantly, as the parent company of WarnerMedia, it earns its spot as the world's largest media and entertainment company, based on revenue. 

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