Good morning.


I’m in Guangzhou, China, today to announce that this city, which is China’s Southern gateway to the world, will be the site of the 2017 Fortune Global Forum.

We’ve been convening CEOs of the Fortune Global 500 every couple of years since 1995 – including four previous times in China. The purpose of these sessions, which bring together an unparalleled gathering of the world’s business leaders, is to take stock of how the two great trends of our time – globalization and digitization – are changing the fundamental nature of business. Guangzhou, the third largest city in China, is perfectly suited for next year’s gathering. It has more than 2000 years of history in global trade, and already serves as a home for investments from more than half the Global 500.

With today’s announcement, the Fortune Global Forum becomes an annual event. We believe the pace of business change, now faster than ever before, demands it. Following our successful Forum in San Francisco last November, we recently announced plans for a special Fortune/Time Global Forum at the Vatican this December, focused on what the private sector can do to ensure the benefits of globalization and digitization are spread more evenly. The Guangzhou Forum will be held in late November or early December of 2017 – exact dates to come.

At a time when a backlash to globalization is building in the U.S. and elsewhere, Fortune believes these gatherings are more important than ever. The two trends – globalization and digitization – are deeply entwined; they are irreversible; and if properly guided, they are still the best routes to prosperity for the broadest number of people. Large companies must either master them or expect to be overcome by them. Our hope is that these annual gatherings will shine a bright light on the best way forward.

Attendance at the Forum is generally limited to CEOs of the Fortune Global 500, but we make some exceptions. If you are interested in attending, please let me know.

More news below. But first, a correction to yesterday’s newsletter, which mistakenly said that Air Liquide had merged with Air Products Inc. It had, of course, merged with Airgas. Apologies for any confusion caused.


Alan Murray