Corporate Oligarchy


These are an international few, ten mega-corporations whose multi-industry holdings create a situation not unlike the coal and iron trusts of Industrial Revolution America: basically, a few large entities own huge chunks of industry, and whoever can outbuy or undercut the competitors. The fact of the matter is that this is a product of a free market economy, where the larger corporations have the ability to diversify the industries they involve themselves in while increasing revenue and industry influence.

While parallels might be drawn to the monopolies of the early twentieth century, the new supercorporations don’t sell under their own names. Rather, they own, own shares of, or partner with hundreds of thousands of brands, which leads to mass appeal based on what Reddit refers to as “The Illusion of Choice”.  This is a deceptive use of terminology because the fact is that while these brands and companies are all associated, they are not companies within companies, like Russian nesting dolls, as the chart leads one to believe. The reality of the situation is much more complicated than a simple infographic can demonstrate.

What it is effective at showing, however, is that there are several very large, very influential corporations behind the multitude of brands that many people use daily. Whether or not this is a good or a bad thing remains to be seen. However, it’s important to know.

What Sparks Our Fire: Knowing the behind-the-scenes workings of corporate America.

Does this affect the way that you view your favorite brands?