Where there’s innovation, there’s hope

LONDON | Just how does innovation relate to the economy, and what does it mean that US and European firms hold all positions at the Top 10 list? The 100 leading innovative firms added more than 400,000 new jobs in 2010 over 2009, three percent more than the prior year and greater than the percentage increase in growth experienced by the S&P 500 for the same period, a comparison of market data for 2011 Top 100 Global Innovator companies released this week by Thomson Reuters shows.

“The jobs created by the Top 100 Global Innovator organizations are a significant indicator of the impact innovation can have on driving economic growth,” said president of the IP Solutions business of Thomson Reuters David Brown.

Additionally, the 2011 Top 100 Global Innovator organizations had a 12.9 percent increase in market cap weighted average revenue over the prior year, whereas the S&P 500 market cap weighted average revenue grew by just 7.2 percent.

The information comes from the launch of the Thomson Reuters 2011 Top 100 Global Innovator(SM) programme, an initiative that analyses patent data and related metrics in a proprietary methodology to identify the companies and institutions that lead the world in innovation activity.

David Brown, president of the IP Solutions business of Thomson Reuters, said

Innovation is a means of growth and prosperity for companies and nations seeking to overcome sluggish economies and achieve competitive advantage.

Thomson Reuters 2011 Top 100 Global Innovator companies are geographically dispersed. Forty percent of them are from the U.S., 31 percent are from Asia, and 29 percent are from Europe. Out of the Top 10, five firms are based in the US and five have their headquarters in the European Union.

3M Company USA
ABB, Ltd. Switzerland
Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. USA
Airbus France
Alcatel-Lucent France
Alcon, Inc. USA
Alfa Laval Sweden
Analog Devices, Inc. USA
Apple, Inc. USA
Applied Materials, Inc. USA


Despite China’s lead in patent application filing volume, it is absent from the top 100 list as global influence and application to grant ratios are important aspects of the methodology. Asia’s representation is split between Japan and South Korea, with 27 percent from the former and four percent from the latter.

Europe’s representation is divided between France (11 percent), Germany (four percent),the Netherlands (four percent), the Principality of Lichtenstein (one percent), Sweden (six percent), and Switzerland (three percent). France is the European leader in innovation. And the message is obvious: it isn’t a matter of size, but of investment planning.

* The complete report is available here.

About the Author

The Corner
The Corner has a team of on-the-ground reporters in capital cities ranging from New York to Beijing. Their stories are edited by the teams at the Spanish magazine Consejeros (for members of companies’ boards of directors) and at the stock market news site Consenso Del Mercado (market consensus). They have worked in economics and communication for over 25 years.

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