From the start of the industrial revolution, the top companies the world have been brick and mortar companies in various industries from the mining industry to the real estate industry. However, this changed after the invention of the internet. Now among the largest companies in the world are internet companies which lead in inventory, revenue generated, and the number of employees. Internet companies are organizations that engage on business on the internet and may exclude information technology companies or the internet service providers.
The Largest Internet Companies In The World
Amazon, also known as Amazon.com is an e-commerce company. With over $107 billion in sales in 2015, Amazon is the largest online retail company in the world. Founded in 1994 by Jeff Bezos, currently its headquarters is in Seattle, Washington. Amazon has a global footprint with affiliate websites worldwide. This made it surpass Wal-Mart in market capitalization of $329.7 billion in 2015. Amazon boasts of being the biggest employer of all the internet companies and a workforce 268,908 people in 2015 and generated revenues of $70 billion.
Google is perhaps the most well-known of internet companies. Its main activity is internet search engine operation. However, it has interests in other fields such as in social media (Google Plus) and Cloud data storage (Google Drive). It is headquartered in Mountain View, California, USA. Google was founded by two university students, Larry Page and Sergey Brin from Stanford University in 1996. The idea was a modification of existing search engines at the time which was initially known as PageRank. In its early stages, it was run from a friend’s garage. Google now has around 61,814 employees and annual revenue of $74.98 billion. It has market capitalization of $493.2 billion.
eBay is an ecommerce company which was founded in 1995 by a computer programmer named Pierre Omidyar. Located in San Jose, California, it has seen its revenue reach $8.59 billion and a labor force consisting of 34,600 people. eBay has its revenue streams diversified through numerous acquisitions in other fields. PayPal, an online money processing company is a notable example which constituted 44% of its revenue before it went public. Market capitalization of eBay in 2015 was $26.98 billion.
Facebook is the largest social media company in the world. With over one billion users, Facebook has seen its revenue reach $17.93 billion. Mark Zuckerberg founded it while a student at Harvard University. Located in Menlo Park, California Facebook has employed more than 12,641 people into its labor force. In 2012, Facebook had its IPO which made its value grow tremendously to reach a market capitalization of more than $25 billion. In 2014, Facebook acquired Whatsapp, a mobile message company for about $19 billion.
Alibaba is the biggest e-commerce company is Asia and has more than a billion users worldwide. Alibaba was founded by Jack Ma in 1999 and has its headquarters in Hangzhou, China. Alibaba has two major portals that run under it, Alibaba and Aliexpress. Alibaba is majorly for wholesale transactions while Aliexpress handles retail transactions. In 2015 Alibaba was valued at $202 billion with over $500 billion in sales. With over 26,000 employees, Alibaba has seen unprecedented sales in China including November, 2015 Singles Day when more than $17.7 billion in sales was realized.