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Unlisted: Did Fortune forget Fortive? | Taking Stock


Fortune Magazine has released its 63rd Fortune 500 list of the biggest companies in the country, as measured by sales. The magazine says its Fortune 500 companies represent two-thirds of the U.S. GDP, or growth domestic product.

To my great disappointment, Fortune did not include Fortive, Snohomish County's newest and largest company. I don't know why it was not included. I suppose it’s because Fortive came into existence at mid-year 2016. That is the only reason I can guess for the omission.

Fortive had sales of $6.224 billion, which would have qualified for No. 427 on the list, and ninth in Washington. But half of those sales occurred while the company was still a part of Danaher. I would have thought that the more than $3 billion in sales that Fortive booked in the second half of 2016 would at least qualify it for the Fortune 1000 list, but maybe it was just too difficult to separate Fortive sales from Danaher sales.

Fortune did include 10 Washington companies in the Fortune 500, and five more in the Fortune 1000. Amazon.com was No. 12 in the country and first in Washington at $137.987 billion in sales. Since the list has come out, Amazon has announced its intention to acquire Whole Foods Markets. That combination would have been good enough to break into the top 10 this year.

Second in Washington and No. 16 in the country was Costco at $118.719 billion in sales. At $85.320 billion in sales, Microsoft was No. 3 in Washington and No. 28 in the country. Microsoft was also the seventh most profitable company in the country with $16.798 billion in profits.

Starbucks took No. 131 in the country with $21.316 billion in sales, as well as No. 80 in profit at $2.817 billion. PACCAR took No. 164 with $17.033 billion in sales. Nordstrom came in at No. 188 with $14.757 billion in sales.

At $8.774 billion in sales, Expedia came in at No. 317, while Weyerhaeuser came in at No. 341 with $7.902 billion in sales. Expeditors International of Washington took No. 429 at $6.098 in sales.

Alaska Air Group, at No. 438 with $5.931 billion in sales, was the last Washington company to make the Fortune 500 list. But look for Alaska Air to soar next year because it acquired Virgin America in the fourth quarter.

For those of you wondering about Boeing, it came in at No. 24 in sales with $94.571 billion, and No. 49 in profits at $4.895 billion. If Boeing were still a Washington company, it would be third in Washington in sales, third in market capitalization, and second in profits. Market capitalization is calculated by multiplying the value of one share of stock by the total number of shares.

All 10 Fortune 500 companies are located in King County. There are five additional Washington companies in the Fortune 1000 list, not big enough to qualify for the Fortune 500, but big enough to be noticed. They include Puget Energy, TrueBlue, Esterline Technologies, Itron and F5 Networks.

TrueBlue is in Pierce County, Itron is in Spokane County, and the other three are all located in King County. Pierce and Spokane counties have each had a Fortune 500 company before, but Snohomish County is still waiting for its first.

Like they used to say in Brooklyn, “Maybe next year.”

Tim Raetzloff operates Abarim Business Computers at Harbor Square in Edmonds. What he writes combines his sense of history and his sense of numbers. Neither he nor Abarim have an investment in any of the companies mentioned in this column.


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