Verizon ousted GlaxoSmithKline as the region's largest public company, a list dominated by firms headquartered outside of the Tri-State area but that exert a big influence on the region's economy.
Only one of the region's 10 largest companies -- PNC Financial Services Group -- is actually based in Pittsburgh. Four of the biggest companies call Europe their home.
The rankings are based on market capitalization, a measure of the value that investors place on a public company. It is determined by multiplying the number of shares a company issues by the price they trade at on a given day. This year's rankings were based on closing prices for Dec. 31.
Movement up or down in the rankings was based largely on how well a company's stock performed in 2012. Issuing shares to make an acquisition -- something Wheeling, W.Va., banker WesBanco did in November when it purchased Fidelity Bancorp of West View -- can also increase a company's market cap.
New York-based Verizon, which finished second in 2011, benefitted from nearly an 8 percent rise in its share price in 2012. Its market cap of $123.5 billion topped GlaxoSmithKline by $16.9 billion. Shares of the United Kingdom-based health care products manufacturer fell nearly 5 percent in 2012. That still kept GlaxoSmithKline comfortably ahead of Philadelphia's Comcast Corp,, which placed third ($98.5 billion market cap) and the fourth-place finisher, Germany's Siemens AG ($96.4 billion market cap).
This year's top 10 includes the same 10 companies that were in last year's top 10.
No. 7 Emerson Electric of St. Louis, the operator of Westinghouse's former process control business, and No. 8 PNC maintained the same rankings they had last year. Verizon, Comcast, German drug and chemical producer Bayer, and Bank of New York Mellon each moved up one spot. And GlaxoSmithKline, Siemens, Royal Bank of Scotland, and Memphis-based shipping giant FedEx each fell one notch.
Among the 50 companies on the list, seven are headquartered in four countries outside the United States and 16 are based in 11 states other than Pennsylvania. The Keystone state is home to 26 companies on the list.
Besides PNC, only four other of the largest 20 companies are based on the Pittsburgh region: PPG Industries (No. 14); H.J. Heinz (No. 16); Mylan (No. 18); and EQT (No. 20). Prices of each of those companies' shares rose in 2012, with PPG turning in the strongest performance. Its shares rose 62.1 percent last year, enabling it to move up three spots on the market cap list.
Heinz could drop off the list next year given the February announcement that Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and private equity firm 3G Capital intend to acquire it for $28 billion. The price tag includes $5 billion in Heinz debt the buyers would assume.
Thanks to a 31 percent jump in its stock price in 2012, rue21 made the list for the first time since going public in 2010. The Cranberry teen clothier ranked 48th with a market cap of $688.9 million.intheleadcompanies
-- Len Boselovic: firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1941 First Published May 3, 2013 4:00 AM