Emerging market firms to reshape corporate world: report

Wed Oct 2, 2013 7:42pm EDT
 
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LONDON (Reuters) - The number of large emerging market companies will surge in coming years and they will become competitors but also customers for rich-country firms, according to a new study.

Almost three-quarters of today's 8,000 companies with annual revenue of $1 billion or more are based in advanced economies.

By 2025, another 7,000 will have joined their ranks, with seven out of 10 of them based in emerging economies, McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) projects.

Emerging markets have fallen out of favor with investors this year because of worries over the sustainability of China's economic model, slower growth in India and Brazil and worries about the ability of the likes of Indonesia and Turkey to attract funds to plug their current account deficits.

MGI director Richard Dobbs said there would be hiccups along the way but he saw little to stop the rise of the big emerging-market corporation.

"Yes, it's going to be a turbulent ride for the next 20 or 30 years as we go through this massive transition. But the rise is going to happen. Some countries may stall, but there are enough emerging markets that there's a degree of inevitability about this," Dobbs told Reuters.

The first wave of development in emerging markets was based on cheap labor, MGI said. As wages rise, a second wave has unfurled - selling to newly rich consumers. The third, overlapping wave is breaking as companies bulk up, propelled by urbanization, income growth and exchange rate appreciation.

By 2025, emerging market firms are likely to account for 40-50 percent of the Fortune Global 500, twice today's share and up from just 5 percent in the period 1980-2000, reckons MGI, the research arm of the consultancy McKinsey & Co.

The China region alone will account for almost a quarter of the Fortune Global 500 in 2025.   Continued...

 
An employee checks newly-assembled electric cars to be exported to South America at an electric vehicle factory in Zouping county, Shandong province September 24, 2013. REUTERS/China Daily