The iPhone Alone Would Be the Country’s 12th Largest Public Company
The brands make the business. And in some cases, they’re giant businesses in their own right. Here are three products and subsidiaries of corporate giants that—taken individually—would still make the 500 list, and where they would rank.
Revenue: $136.7 billion
On January 9, 2007, Apple (AAPL) made two announcements. The first was the introduction of the iPhone—a product the late Steve Jobs introduced as an “iPod, phone, and internet communicator.” The second was that the company was changing its name from Apple Computer, Inc. to simply Apple Inc.—showing that even before it went on sale the company recognized how transformative to its business the iPhone would become. Today iPhone represents 63% of Apple’s $216 billion revenue.
Maybe just as impressive: Its smaller business units, namely Macintosh, iPad, web services, and “Other” (which includes Apple Watch, Beats and Apple TV), would all be Fortune 500 companies in their own right.
Amazon Web Services
Revenue: $12.219 billion
Sales for Amazon’s (AMZN) cloud computing platform Amazon Web Services, or AWS, have grown dramatically in the last few years and investors love the diversification it brings to Amazon’s top line.
Originally built to serve the computing needs of Amazon.com, it now powers the technology of dozens of Fortune 500 companies including GE (GE), Adobe Systems (ADBE), and Netflix (NFLX). So dominant is its platform that when AWS experiences an outage, nearly every web user feels the effects. AWS accounted for nearly 9% of Amazon’s 2016 revenues, up from just over 5% in 2014.
Revenue: $25.483 billion
Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) owns everything from ice cream parlors to railroads but there’s only one business Warren Buffett describes as “the company that set my heart afire 66 years ago (and for which the flame still burns)”—car insurance giant Geico. And it’s easy to see why. Geico’s top line has grown 300% in the last 17 years, and has made a profit on its underwriting in each of those years (most insurers are happy to break even on underwriting). Other Berkshire companies that would make the Fortune 500 include BNSF railroad, Berkshire Energy, Berkshire Hathaway Reinsurance Group, and McLane Company.
A version of this article appears in the June 15, 2017 issue of Fortune with the headline “This Brand Dwarfs Your Company.”