In this article we are going to list the 15 biggest mining companies in the world. Click to skip ahead and jump to the 5 biggest mining companies in the world. It may not be the flashiest of industries or the most popular, but it is easily one of the most integral industries in the entire world. Without the mining industry, most manufacturing industries would not survive as mining provides raw materials to these industries. You may also want to learn about the biggest manufacturing companies in the world who are often dependent on mining industries either directly or indirectly for making and selling their own products. The same is true for drilling companies as well, and you may want to take a look at the largest drilling companies in the world.
Even though it is extremely integral, the mining industry is also facing a lot of issues, one of which is the uncertainty of the prices of these commodities, in addition to the macroeconomic risks that the industry is facing. Because of these issues, most companies are having to focus on their own companies and focusing on reducing costs and improving efficiencies as well as focusing on technology to drive their profits and their margins. Another issue the top companies are facing is where capital is coming from as in the past, capital inflows were intrinsically linked to commodity prices, which as I mentioned, are quite uncertain. However, this is far from the biggest threat the industry faces. There has been a lot of hue and cry over the past decades over the damage that mining is doing to the environment and the countries which are hubs of mining. When companies mine huge areas of land, they often leave the land as unusable and also result in a lot of carbon emissions, which is the primary reason behind climate change and global warming. More and more countries, especially the developed countries, have come up with a lot of rules and regulations to minimize the damage that these mining companies cause, which is making things harder and more expensive for the said mining companies.
The aforementioned macroeconomic issues include political instability which is a major issue for many countries, especially in Africa where many of the biggest mines in the world are located. Corruption and instability plague many countries in the region which can affect the operations of a company. Also, trade wars especially between China and the United States, have threatened economic activities as well which has led to uncertainty in the mining industry, as many of the biggest companies in mining are from the United States. Another major risk to mining companies is an economic downturn which was on the cards even before the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
Covid-19 impacted basically every industry in the world as countries across the globe went into lockdowns and faced recessions or depressions, especially in the West. The mining industry was not exempt from this impact, as many customers closed access to their sites while new protocols have affected day to day activities as well. Questions regarding the long term impact of the pandemic still remain, and these questions include how fast the economies of countries will be able to recover once the vaccine is available globally and things start to return to normal. While the mining industry has not been as significantly affected as some other countries, such as the airline industry, only time will tell what the true impact in 2020 was.
The biggest mining companies in the world are true giants of the industry, and the 15 companies in our list have close to $600 billion in market cap, nearly $500 billion in revenue, over $700 billion in assets and provide direct employment to more than 650,000 globally. These companies have been at the top of their game for many years, and few challengers seem likely to knock them off their perch. Let’s take a look at the biggest mining companies now, starting with number 15:
15. Franco Nevada
Total market cap of the company (in billions of dollars): 25.1
Total revenue of the company in 2019 (in billions of dollars): 0.8
Total assets of the company in 2019 (in billions of dollars): 5
Total profits of the company in 2019 (in millions of dollars): 344
Total employees of the company in 2019: 42
The Canadian company was founded in 1983 and owns royalties and streams in gold mining.