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The New Global Challengers: How 100 Top Companies from Rapidly Developing Economies Are Changing the World

Companies based in RDEs are winning share in global markets, making major acquisitions, and emerging as important customers, business partners, and competitors to the world’s largest companies. Through a rigorous selection process, BCG has identified 100 such companies that are posing significant challenges—and opportunities—around the globe. This report outlines their six strategic models for globalization and suggests some implications for both challengers and incumbents.

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  • A Word from the Authors
  • The New Global Challenge
  • The RDE 100 Emerging Global Challengers
  • How the RDE 100 Are Going Global
  • The Competitive Strengths and Weaknesses of Emerging Global Challengers
  • Looking Ahead

In our discussions with executives at the world’s largest companies, globalization and its challenges are often at the top of the agenda. Invariably, one key question comes up: Which are the new companies based in China, India, and other rapidly developing economies that I need to know about? Executives recognize that a new class of company is arising in the world today—a group of emerging challengers that are becoming important players in both developing and developed markets around the globe.

Indeed, many companies based in RDEs are going global fast. As this report highlights, a sample of 100 leading RDE-based companies already have combined annual revenue of $715 billion—and are growing at an average rate of 24 percent per year. Companies in this sample are gaining global market share, making major acquisitions, and emerging as important customers, business partners, and competitors for the world’s largest companies.

The Boston Consulting Group recently assessed the activities and strategies of these newly globalizing companies. We identified and profiled 100 of them, focusing on those with large businesses, significant global activity, an evident commitment to further globalization, and solid prospects for continued success. A global team of senior BCG consultants, based principally in Beijing, Moscow, Mumbai, and São Paulo but also spanning other RDEs, contributed to this effort.

Our analysis of this sample of 100 companies has yielded important insights into the broader trend of RDE-based companies that are expanding globally. This trend is only beginning. Ultimately, its implications will affect every industry and market. We hope that you will find this report interesting and useful. As always, we would be pleased to talk with you about our observations and conclusions.

Marcos Aguiar is a partner and managing director in the São Paulo office of The Boston Consulting Group.

Arindam Bhattacharya is a partner and managing director in the firm's New Delhi office.

Thomas Bradtke is a partner and managing director in the firm's Dubai office.

Pascal Cotte is a senior partner and managing director in the firm's Paris office.

Stephan Dertnig is a senior partner and managing director in the firm's Moscow office.

Michael Meyer is a principal in the firm's Beijing office.

David C. Michael is a senior partner and managing director in the firm's Beijing office and Head of BCG Greater China.

Harold L. Sirkin is a senior partner and managing director in the firm's Chicago office.

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