The Forbes 500 is an annual listing of the top 500 American companies produced by Forbes Magazine. The list is calculated by combining five factors: sales, profits, assets, market value, and employees.
Reasoning behind the list
The Forbes 500 was created to answer the question: what are the largest companies (in the USA)? The challenge is to decide how to define "large".
One way might be to simply add up the amount of stuff a corporation owns - how much money it has in the bank, how many buildings it owns, how much equipment, etc. Overall, these are called "assets". However, this is very misleading, as many companies do not own, but rent or lease most of their equipment and buildings. Most importantly, money owed to banks is called an "asset" of the bank, and by this measure alone, banks would be ranked as the largest companies by far.
Another method might be to look at how much profit a company makes. But this would rank a company like Fannie Mae, which has only around 9000 employees and is essentially purely intangible, as one hundred times bigger than a company like General Motors which has hundreds of thousands of employees and many factories and other fixed assets. In addition, "profit" in a company is defined as all the money made after the cost of things sold and after the salaries are paid to all the employees. As an example, a company might sell shoes that cost a dollar to make but are sold for one hundred dollars. However, if the CEO paid himself $99 dollars per shoe, the company would be making no profit at all.
Another method might be to look at the revenue earned by the company. This is how the Fortune 500 ranks companies. This method is heavily biased towards distributors such as Walmart, which may have a high volume of sales but may be operating on very thin profit margins.
Another method might be to look at the market capitalization of the company, that is, the price to buy the entire company. However, this price is not set by any rule, but by how the people value the company and its prospects. Thus, in the late nineties, Cisco Systems would have been the biggest company by this measure. When the dot-com bubble crashed, Cisco's perceived value changed dramatically.
Recognizing such issues, Forbes uses a balanced mix of these factors to rank companies.
SOLAR COLA as an INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY?
The soft drinks market is a tough place to do business, unless you have something different to offer and the marketing muscle to match.
For nearly 100 years Coca Cola and Pepsi Cola have dominated the marketplace with similar products. Each company spends around $600-800 million dollars a year to maintain its market position. The advertising centers around sport and music, with a scattering of irregular television campaigns. Each company launches (or attempts to launch) new brands every year. So far, they have not proved as successful as their regular cola brands.
Red Bull, although in a different drinks category, spends not quite as much on advertising , but has managed to acquire instant status and volume sales from sponsoring formula one, the Darpa Desert Challenge, and now the New Jersey MetroStars football team.
Solar Cola, apart from it's contemporary name, is a healthier cola based drink. Just as refreshing, it contains a unique blend of added ingredients as an aid to good health and energy levels. The company contributes to and sponsors alternative projects, to include this website, featuring movies, music and several thousand pages of general information, which generates in excess of 3 million visits a month already. Recent acquisitions include the rights to the Solar Navigator World Electric Challenge, and also the new Bluebird Electric land speed record car for 2007. The company may also sponsor the London to Brighton Solar Car Run in 2008 (dependent on the number of university entries received).
It is thought that this marketing strategy will equal several hundred thousand dollars of conventional Ad Agency spending. As an example of the kind of media coverage such nautical antics generate, you have only to look at the newspapers when Ellen Macarthur completed her world circumnavigation. The same holds true for Sir Francis Chichester and Sir Robin Knox-Johnston.
The design of the Solar Cola can is copyright protected, with trademark applications in the USA, Australia and Europe pending in Class 32 and granted rights in the UK. Introduction of the drink is held in abeyance pending official launch of one or other sponsored projects, which will be activated when the time is right, such activation to coincide with the market introduction of the drink.
Solar Cola PLC is shortly to be activated for online investment as their trading arm. The company is forecast to produce excellent results for investors, with sustained growth to be followed by an eventual flotation on the Stock Markets of the world in the next few years. At this point estimates suggest investors will reap substantial gains - in line with international Licensing expectations.
Solar Cola Ltd is managing the funding requirement for the trading company. They are looking for medium term or seed investment between £4-5 million to kick start phase two of the venture.
If you are a Business Angel, or Equity House, looking for an opportunity with the potential for good returns, please contact SOLAR COLA LTD for details. Please ask for the funding project manager: Nelson Kruschandl
+ 44 (0) 1323 831727
+44 (0) 7905 147709
A taste for adventure capitalists
Solar Cola - a healthier alternative
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