Shining a light on the world’s biggest companies
Filed under - Private sector
- Statoil 8.3 |
- Rio Tinto 7.2 |
- BHP Billiton 7.2 |
- ArcelorMittal 6.9 |
- BG Group 6.7 |
- HSBC Holdings 6.7 |
- BASF 6.7 |
- France Telecom 6.6 |
- BP 6.6 |
- Allianz 6.6 |
- Tesco 6.5 |
- Novartis 6.5 |
- ExxonMobil 6.4 |
- Vodafone 6.4 |
- Wal-Mart Stores 6.4 |
- ANZ Banking 6.3 |
- Siemens 6.3 |
- GlaxoSmithKline 6.2 |
- Royal Dutch Shell 6.2 |
- ENEL 6.2 |
- GDF Suez 6.2 |
- Telefónica 6.2 |
- British Amer Tobacco 6.1 |
- Bayer Group 6.1 |
- Westpac Banking Group 6 |
- General Electric 6 |
- Home Depot 6 |
- L'Oréal Group 6 |
- Deutsche Telekom 6 |
- E.ON 6 |
- Roche Holding 5.9 |
- Sanofi-Aventis 5.9 |
- ENI 5.9 |
- Nestlé 5.9 |
- SAP 5.8 |
- Toronto-Dominion Bank 5.7 |
- Unilever 5.7 |
- Banco Santander 5.4 |
- Oil & Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) 5.4 |
- BNP Paribas 5.4 |
- Coca-Cola 5.3 |
- Occidental Petroleum 5.2 |
- Chevron 5.2 |
- Credit Suisse Group 5.1 |
- Total 5.1 |
- Amgen 5 |
- United Technologies Corporation (UTC) 5 |
- AstraZeneca 5 |
- Merck & Co 4.9 |
- Hewlett-Packard 4.8 |
- Banco Bradesco 4.8 |
- Petrobras-Petróleo Brasil 4.7 |
- Vale 4.7 |
- Reliance Industries 4.7 |
- Intel 4.7 |
- Abbott Laboratories 4.7 |
- AT&T 4.7 |
- Lloyds Banking Group 4.6 |
- 3M 4.5 |
- EDF Group 4.4 |
- Qualcomm 4.4 |
- Royal Bank of Canada 4.4 |
- América Móvil 4.4 |
- Johnson & Johnson 4.4 |
- Samsung Electronics 4.3 |
- IBM 4.2 |
- Procter & Gamble 4.2 |
- Oracle 4.1 |
- PetroChina 4.1 |
- United Parcel Service (UPS) 4.1 |
- Barclays 4 |
- Schlumberger 4 |
- Saudi Basic Industries 4 |
- Philip Morris International 3.9 |
- CNOOC (China National Offshore Oil Corporation) 3.9 |
- Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) 3.9 |
- Citigroup 3.8 |
- JPMorgan Chase 3.8 |
- Pfizer 3.7 |
- McDonald's 3.7 |
- ConocoPhillips 3.7 |
- PepsiCo 3.5 |
- Visa 3.5 |
- Cisco Systems 3.4 |
- Microsoft 3.4 |
- Walt Disney 3.4 |
- Goldman Sachs Group 3.3 |
- Teva Pharmaceutical Industries 3.3 |
- Verizon Communications 3.3 |
- Mitsubishi UFJ Financial 3.2 |
- Apple 3.2 |
- Bank of America 3.2 |
- Commonwealth Bank 3.1 |
- Canon 3 |
- Google 2.9 |
- Anheuser-Busch InBev 2.9 |
- Toyota Motor 2.8 |
- Gazprom, OAO 2.8 |
- Amazon.com 2.8 |
- Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corporation 2.6 |
- Berkshire Hathaway 2.4 |
- China Construction Bank (CCB) 1.9 |
- Honda Motor 1.9 |
- Bank of Communications 1.7 |
- Bank of China 1.1 |
The world’s 105 biggest companies are worth more than US$11 trillion. They touch the lives of people across the globe.
But just how much do we know about their impact on daily lives? Too often, citizens experience little benefit from global economic activity while suffering the consequences of unethical corporate activity.
Transparency in Corporate Reporting assesses the disclosure of steps these companies have in place to fight corruption. It also looks at companies’ transparency footprint across 177 countries: to what extent are earnings and taxes in specific countries made public.
Infographic: Transparency in Corporate Reporting
Companies are scored from 0-10 based on their disclosure of various sorts of business information important for investors and the general public: where they pay their taxes, their corporate structures and what they are doing to prevent corruption. In the scores, 10 is most transparent, and 0 is least transparent.
Reporting anti-corruption measures
The world’s largest companies are increasingly committed to reporting on their measures for preventing corruption.
Two-thirds of the 105 companies (68 per cent) report on their corruption prevention programmes. This compares to less than half (47 per cent) in 2009, the last time Transparency International analysed corporate transparency.
The vast majority of companies have codes of conduct and provide training for all employees.
Open ears: Allowing employees to report corruption
Eighty-five of the world’s 105 biggest companies provide channels through which employees can report potential violations of policy or seek advice.
Corporate structures shrouded
Modern businesses are complex global operations. The world’s biggest companies have tens of thousands of subsidiaries. These can be massive operations producing consumer products or extracting natural resources, or small offices based in a country solely for tax purposes.
When financial flows within a company are transparent, citizens and investigators can track money flows, exposing money laundering, tax evasion and other crimes, and allowing citizens to hold governments to account and investors to evaluate a company’s prospects.
Anything to declare?
Transparency International looked at whether companies provide complete and accurate lists of all of their corporate holdings: a worrying 78 out of 105 companies do not disclose where all their subsidiaries are registered.
Without transparency, it is difficult to know how operations in locations such as developing countries or secrecy jurisdictions feature in company earnings. The World Bank has documented the use of subsidiaries to funnel bribes to foreign officials.
Information about who owns what is also vital if companies are to be held accountable for the actions of their subsidiaries, such as respect for the environment and labour rights. When patterns of ownership are obscured, companies can shirk responsibility for the actions of their subsidiaries.
What do companies do in your country?
If companies disclose how much they pay to governments in every country they operate in, citizens the world over can know how much money flows into the public budget from these business operations. This is why new legislation is emerging in Europe and the United States mandating such disclosure for certain industries.
Transparency reduces opportunities for misuse of public money, but also shows how companies contribute to the societies they operate in. Yet few of the world’s biggest companies publicly disclose financial data about each country of operation on their websites.
Some findings from the report
Of the 105 companies surveyed in our report:
- 50 do not disclose revenue/sales in any country of foreign operations
- 85 do not disclose income tax in any country of foreign operations
- 39 do not disclose any financial data (tax, revenue, sales, pre-tax income, capital investment, community contributions) in their countries of operation
When this disclosure does not happen, it is harder to hold governments to account for the way they use revenues from multinational companies, and harder to track the contribution of companies. The multinational company record in Eurozone debt crisis countries, for example, is not good. Sixty-five of the 105 surveyed companies operate in Spain, but only three publicly disclose their income taxes paid in the country. In Greece, none of the 43 surveyed companies operating there disclose income taxes.
Measure the transparency footprint left in your country by the world’s largest companies
This map shows how many of the world's 105 biggest publicly traded companies operate in each of 177 countries around the world. Hovering over a country will show how many companies disclose key aspects of their operations:
- Revenue: How many companies publicly disclose revenues or sales in the country via their website?
- Income tax: How many companies publicly disclose income taxes paid in the country via their website?
When it comes to disclosure, the best performing sectors were mining, oil and gas – the extractives sector. Companies from these industries took six of the top 10 positions in the ranking.
Hopefully this is a sign that pressure from investors, governments and society encourages businesses to become more transparent. Extractive companies have long been targeted for the opacity of their operations, but have improved noticeably in this regard since Transparency International first evaluated them in 2008.
Statoil, ranked first with a score of 8.3 of a possible 10, discloses information on revenues, taxes and community contributions on a country-by-country basis for all 34 countries in which it operates. Runner-up, mining firm Rio Tinto, maintains similar disclosure levels while operating in 28 countries.
Despite the role of hard-to-access company structures in the financial crisis of 2008, the 24 financial companies in our report scored an average 4.2 out of 10. The lowest scoring companies in Europe, Asia and America were all banks.
Among the 24 financial institutions evaluated, 13 companies disclose no data on their foreign operations, seven disclose single data points and only four disclose considerable country-level data.
The financial sector provides 12 of the bottom 35 companies. Read the special section of the report about the financial sector.
See how global giants performed, using the data behind the report.
The XLS charts below show how companies scored according to corruption-relevant indicators. For each criterion, companies received one point for a measure in place or data disclosed and 0.5 for partial disclosure. They scored zero when the information was not available or a click away from the parent company website.
Chart 1: What are companies doing to fight corruption?
Based on guidelines for companies preparing anti-corruption measures, section one scores companies for reporting on anti-corruption programmes, including measures such as facilitation payments and political contributions.
Chart 2: Organisational transparency
Complex corporate structures can hide tax evasion and bribes. This table looks at how much of their operations companies reveal: who are their subsidiaries, where they operate and where they are based for tax purposes.
Chart 3: How transparent are companies operating in your country?
The disclosure of key information such as profits, revenues, and payments to governments by the 105 companies is evaluated across 177 countries.
Here companies are rated for disclosure. This information shows citizens the contributions companies make to their communities, and allows them to monitor how the government manages the money that comes from these companies.
Chart 4: Final scores given to each of the 105 companies
This is a simple XLS file of the final scores for the 105 companies assessed in the new report, Transparency in Corporate Reporting.
- Read our press release in English, Spanish, French and Mandarin
- Read more about the report in our FAQ
- View the explanatory codebook for the study
- View a Flickr slideshow of infographics from the report
- Download these infographics in a PDF
- Download the company scores in a PDF
- Promoting Revenue Transparency: 2011 Report on Oil and Gas Companies, published by Transparency International in partnership with Revenue Watch, rates 44 companies on their levels of transparency. Together, these firms represent 60 per cent of global oil and gas production.
- Transparency in Reporting on Anti-Corruption: A Report on Corporate Practices (2009)
- Promoting Revenue Transparency: 2008 Report on Revenue Transparency of Oil and Gas Companies
- Transparency International sent a submission to the Financial Stability Board (FSB) Enhanced Disclosure Task Force with recommendations for improved reporting of companies. Enhanced transparency of financial institutions is essential to enable stakeholders including shareholders, regulators and consumers to assess the nature and the size of the risks to which they are exposed and to prevent global financial crises as the one in 2008. The FSB Enhanced Disclosure Task Force is tasked to “develop principles for enhanced disclosures, based on current market conditions and risks (..)”.
- Financial Times: Barclays in transparency ratings blow
- Reuters: Watchdog tells "opaque" finance sector to open up
- El Espectador: Multinacionales: las más y las menos transparentes
Manager, Media and Public Relations
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