These 25 Companies Are More Powerful Than Many Countries

Going stateless to maximize profits, multinational companies are vying with governments for power. Who is winning?

FP
By Parag Khanna
Top 25 by David Francis
Illustration by Edel Rodriguez

At first glance, the story of Accenture reads like the archetype of the American dream. One of the world’s biggest consulting companies, which commands tens of billions of dollars in annual revenues, was born in the 1950s as a small division of accounting firm Arthur Andersen. Its first major project was advising General Electric to install a computer at a Kentucky facility in order to automate payment processing. Several decades of growth followed, and by 1989, the division was successful enough to become its own organization: Andersen Consulting.

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