Whether to go public or not is a complex decision for business owners. Initial public offerings can quickly generate massive amounts of capital that could be used for company expansion or for paying existing debt. IPOs are also frequently used as an exit strategy for early investors looking to realize a return on their initial investment.
Going public, however, also has some drawbacks. Public companies have to adhere to Securities and Exchange Commission regulations as well as answer to shareholder demands. In addition, while keeping a company private may restrict its growth potential, profits will remain in the hands of the few investors.
With data provided by PrivCo, a private company intelligence platform, 24/7 Wall St. listed the top 25 U.S. private companies by annual revenue. Cargill, Incorporated is the largest private company in the country with annual revenue exceeding $120 billion.
The companies on this list operate in 13 industries. Insurance companies are by far the most common, representing seven of the 25 largest private companies. Notably, most of these insurance companies are mutual insurance companies, in which ownership lies with policyholders as opposed to a small group of investors.
The largest publicly-held U.S. companies in the country dwarf the largest private companies. Of the largest 25 companies nationwide, including both private and public companies, only two are private: Cargill, Inc. and Koch Industries Inc. The largest public company, Wal-Mart, has four times the annual revenue of the largest private company.
To determine America’s largest private companies, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed annual revenue figures provided by PrivCo. Industry and headquarter locations were also aggregated by PrivCo.
These are America’s largest private companies.