Which Company Is The Most Valuable In The History Of The World?
Answer: The Dutch East India Company
It would be more than forgivable to assume that the most valuable company in the world was a modern one given the enormous amount of wealth generated by modern technology firms. Apple, for example, was valued at 661 billion dollars in 2012. Even more valuable was the Middle Eastern oil firm Saudi Aramco, valued at a staggering 3.6 trillion dollars in 2012.
Neither of those massive holdings however can even begin to compare to the inflation-adjusted value of The Dutch East India Company. The Dutch East India Company was a chartered company established in 1602 when the Netherlands granted them a 21 year monopoly on colonizing Asia.
The company was enormously successful in establishing colonies in Asia and that, combined with the tulip mania which was a bizarre speculative bubble in Northern Europe fueled by a runaway tulip bulb market, led the East India Company to become the most valuable company in the world with a total worth of 78 million Dutch Guilders. Adjust that amount into modern US currency and you’re looking at a company worth 7.4 trillion dollars.