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International Commercial Organizations

Multinational Corporations, International Companies

Last modified: 2015-03-07 by zoltán horváth
Keywords: international companies | international commercial organizations | international organizations | multinational corporations |
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List of international/multinational companies on FOTW:


When referring to the concept of "multinational" stricto sensu, according to the Oxford dictionary it is a word that means "Including or involving several countries or individuals of several nationalities"
"A MNC (Multinational Corporation, Multi National Corporation or multinational enterprise) is an organization, that owns or controls productions of goods or services in one or more countries other than the home country. It can also be referred to as an international corporation, a "transnational corporation", or as a stateless corporation.
A multinational corporation is usually a large corporation which produces or sells goods or services in various countries.
It may be attributed as multinational corporation when a corporation is registered in more than one country or has operations in more than one country" (different from the concept of having distributors or registered authorized agents).
Thus, a MNC engages into trading internationally (usually overseas, but it can also do so through several means of transportation, such as land and air), which is a concept that it is varying due to the different methods to engage in "international business" such as internet that have transformed the whole concept of international trade and the people and/or organizations that do so.
A MNC can usually be called a "multinational", an "overseas company", (Corporate) Trust, MNU (Multinationale Unternehmen, in German), Multinationale (in French), Multinazionale (in Italian), Keiretsu (系列, lit. system, series, grouping of enterprises) (in Japanese), Zaibatsu (財閥, literally financial clique), Holding (and its subholdings), Financial (or Economic) Group, "Sindicato" (Sindicate, in Spanish), "Grupo" and "Grupo Empresarial" (Group and Business Group, in Spanish), "Multinacional" (Multinational, in Spanish), "Multilatina" (Multilatin, in Spanishm referring to Latin American companies that expand their businesses to other Latin American countries mostly), etc.
The first such company is atributted to the Muscovy Company (also called the Russian Company or the Muscovy Trading Company, Московская компания, Moskovskaya kompaniya, in Russian), which was an English trading company chartered in 1555 which established a trading route through a monopoly on trade (thus, MNC's are often criticized for their business practices all around the world, because of monopoly behaviors, corruption, bribing, poor environmental practices, etc.).
However others refer to the first "true" MNC when referring to the "Dutch East India Company, which was established on March 20, 1602 when the States General of the Netherlands granted it a 21-year monopoly to carry out trade activities in Asia. It would become the largest company in the world for nearly 200 years and the first company to issue stock, possessing quasi-governmental powers, including the ability to wage war, imprison and execute convicts, negotiate treaties (at State level), mint its own coins, and establish colonies. At its height, the VOC was valued at USD7 trillion in 2015 dollars"
This list (which does not have all the MNC's but it is a good starting point) can used for reference:
Esteban Rivera, 17 February 2015