The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #3 – The South Sea Company


In this nine-piece report, Huntedhead will look at global corporations throughout history. The ranking is based on total worth, adjusted for inflation.

The South Sea Company in 1720 – $4,000,000,000,000

Officially named The Governor and Company of the merchants of Great Britain, trading to the South Seas and other parts of America, and for the encouragement of fishing, the South Sea Company was created to reduce the cost of national debt by issuing shares. Through widespread rumors, which came about from within the company, the stock price inflated to surreal levels leading to a value £200 million, $4 trillion in today’s money.

Investors soon realized that the return on investment would not live up to the extreme expectations. After the rise the inevitable fall came along, resulting in many personal bankruptcies for people whom had bought shares on credit.

 

South Sea Company Bubble Chart

The self-inflated stock price chart for the South Sea Company (© Wikimedia Commons)

The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #4 – Saudi Aramco
The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #5 – IBM

The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #6 – PetroChina

The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #7 – Microsoft
The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #8 – Apple
The World’s Most Valuable Companies throughout History #9 – ExxonMobil

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