Five among the 10 largest major companies in the Philippines are conglomerates, operating in industries spanning from food and beverages to electricity distribution. Two Filipino regional banks also rank among the Asian island country’s top 10 firms.
For some macro-level international trade perspective on recent company performance, consider that the overall value of Filipino exports grew in value by 21.2% from US$56.7 billion in 2013 to $68.7 billion for 2017. Year over year, the aggregate value of exports from the Philippines rose by 22% from 2016 to 2017.
In our micro-level analysis below, we compare Philippines top 10 companies based on asset values, number of employees, sales and profitability as of December 2018. Also specified is the Philippine city where each business has its headquarters.
Please note that annualized financial metrics for companies not ranking in the latest Forbes Global 2000 (San Miguel, Alliance Global Group, Aboitiz Equity Ventures and PLDT were estimated based on the most current 2018 data available on article publication date.
Philippines Top 10 Largest Companies
Below are Philippines biggest companies organized by asset value. Shown within parentheses is the primary industry in which each company operates. Also shown is the change in asset value in 2018 compared to one year earlier.
- BDO Unibank (regional bank): US$53.6 billion, up 14.5% from 2017
- Metropolitan Bank & Trust (regional bank): $39.6 billion, up 4.8%
- Top Frontier Investment Holdings (oil & gas): $30 billion, up 4.2%
- Ayala (conglomerate): $20.5 billion, up 11.4%
- SM Investments (department stores): $18.6 billion, up 7.5%
- JG Summit Holdings (conglomerate): $14.9 billion, up 11.2%
- San Miguel (conglomerate): $10.9 billion, up 13.2%
- Alliance Global Group (conglomerate): $10.7 billion, down -5%
- Aboitiz Equity Ventures (conglomerate): $9.6 billion, up 18.6%
- PLDT (telecommunications services): $8.8 billion, down -3.2%
Eight of these world-class firms grew their asset values from 2017 to 2018, led by conglomerate Aboitiz Equity Ventures’ 18.6% gain. BDO Unibank expanded its total assets by 14.5%, ahead of a trio of conglomerates: San Miguel (up 13.2%), Ayala (up 11.4%) and JG Summit Holdings (up 11.2%).
The two top Filipino businesses enduring year-over-year declines were telecom provider PLDT (down -3.2%) and Alliance Global Group (down -5%). The latter is an investment holding conglomerated noted for its food and beverage assets, real estate and fast-food establishments.
Sales is the life blood for most businesses that depend on servicing customers. This rings particularly true for firms that compete not only for domestic revenues but also as a measure of financial strength in international markets. Nine of Philippines largest companies increased their year-over-year total revenues.
- San Miguel: US$19.3 billion, up 22.9% from 2017
- Top Frontier Investment Holdings: $16.4 billion, up 15.5%
- SM Investments: $7.8 billion, up 6.8%
- JG Summit Holdings: $5.2 billion, up 6.1%
- Ayala: $4.8 billion, up 14.3%
- Aboitiz Equity Ventures: $3.4 billion, up 37.2%
- PLDT: $3.1 billion, down -0.8%
- BDO Unibank: $3 billion, up 15.4%
- Alliance Global Group: $2.8 billion, up 3.3%
- Metropolitan Bank & Trust: $2.1 billion, up 5%
Aboitiz Equity Ventures recorded a 37.2% annual sales increase. Other double-digit gains belong to San Miguel (up 22.9%), Top Frontier Investment Holdings (up 15.5%), BDO Unibank (up 15.4%) and Ayala (up 14.3%).
The lone sales decliner was telecommunications services provider PLDT via its -0.8% setback.
Despite the slowing global economy, six of the top 10 Filipino companies grew their profits from 2017 to 2018.
- San Miguel: US$996.5 million, up 85.5% from 2017
- SM Investments: $664 million, up 2.2%
- Ayala: $600 million, up 9.5%
- JG Summit Holdings: $583 million, down -8%
- BDO Unibank: $554 million, up 0.9%
- Aboitiz Equity Ventures: $439.6 million, down -9.7%
- Metropolitan Bank & Trust: $365 million, down -2.7%
- Alliance Global Group: $320 million, up 8.1%
- Top Frontier Investment Holdings: $244 million, up 1,062%
- PLDT: $137 million, down -48.1%
The strongest annual profit improvement goes to oil and gas operator Top Frontier Investment Holdings, thanks to its robust 1,062% increase.
The four Filipino profit decliners were telecom firm PLDT (down -48.1%), Aboitiz Equity Ventures (down -9.7%), JG Summit Holdings (down -8%) and Metropolitan Bank & Trust (down -2.7%).
As the following list shows, the largest Filipino companies by asset value does not precisely match with the biggest number of employees working for each corporation.
- SM Investments: 86,457 employees
- Alliance Global Group: 42,055
- Ayala: 35,073
- BDO Unibank: 34,000
- Top Frontier Investment Holdings: 24,596
- San Miguel: 24,539
- JG Summit Holdings: 22,894
- PLDT: 13,869
- Metropolitan Bank & Trust: 12,524
- Aboitiz Equity Ventures: 10,969
For example, SM Investments places fifth in terms of asset size yet the department stores conglomerate provides the most jobs compared to the other major companies in the Philippines.
Five of the Philippines top 10 largest companies have their headquarters located in Makati City, nicknamed the “Financial Capital of the Philippines” or the “Wall Street of the Philippines”.
- Aboitiz Equity Ventures: Bonifacio Global City
- Metropolitan Bank & Trust: Makati City
- Ayala: Makati City
- BDO Unibank: Makati City
- PLDT: Makati City
- Top Frontier Investment Holdings: Makati City
- San Miguel: Mandaluyong
- SM Investments: Pasay
- JG Summit Holdings: Pasig City
- Alliance Global Group: Quezon City
Makati is the financial center of the Philippines, boasting the nation’s highest concentration of multinational and local corporations. Major banks, corporations, department stores as well as foreign embassies are based in Makati.
Note some of the above company offerings may include products others than the principal category shown within parenthesis under the Assets tab.
For example, Top Frontier Investment Holdings is a diversified conglomerate that not only produces food, drinks and packaging products, another business division engages in mining.
Besides offering telecommunication services and products for fixed line and wireless customers, Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co (PLDT) also provides outsourcing business process solutions via its subsidiaries. PLDT is also engaged in investment businesses.
Forbes Global 2000 individual company profiles, Example of top Philippine company compiled for this study: Metropolitan Bank & Trust. Accessed on January 28, 2019
Forbes Global 2000 rankings for the Philippines, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on January 28, 2019
MacroTrends, Key company financial metrics. Accessed on January 28, 2019
Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on January 28, 2019
Wikipedia, Category: Companies of Philippines. Accessed on January 28, 2019
Wikipedia, List of companies of Philippines. Accessed on January 28, 2019
Wikipedia, Makati. Accessed on January 28, 2019