Sinopec, or China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation, is a company you may have never heard of but that’s out-earning almost every other company in the world. In 2019, the state-owned oil and gas exploration and refining giant grossed $369,200,000,000. However, appearances can be deceiving, given that its former president received the death penalty in 2009 for bribery.
The future of Sinopec Group, along with other petroleum companies, is certainly in question, given concerns over the environmental crisis and climate change. Many are choosing to divest from oil and gas and invest their money elsewhere. Nevertheless, China has a history of surprising the world with its industrial durability and ability to master the state-run communist economy.
However you may feel about different controversies surrounding Wal-Mart, it was the most profitable company in the world at the beginning of 2020, grossing $524,000,000,000 the previous year. It placed well above Amazon, which many now consider its most significant competitor. Unlike Amazon, which specializes in quickly delivering low-cost items to people’s homes, Wal-Mart has not adjusted rapidly to a delivery platform.
There are concerns about the future of Wal-Mart, despite its status as the most popular of any low-price chain store. One is that given its immense size and reliance on bureaucratic processes getting filtered down to local stores, it cannot adapt quickly to changes. Adaptability will probably be a key asset moving forward, so Wal-Mart may collapse under its weight. Another concern is that it does not pay store employees a living wage and has not adapted environmentally friendly practices.
Sources: “TOP 10 Most Profitable Companies in the World in 2020.” FXSSI. May 26, 2020. “Most Profitable Businesses in 2020.” Fortune 500.