The Center of International Financial Management Studies (IFM) of the São Paulo School of Business Administration (EAESP) of Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV), Brazil, and the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (CCSI), a joint center of Columbia Law School and The Earth Institute at Columbia University in New York, are releasing today the results of their research report profiling the top 20 Brazilian multinational enterprises (MNEs), ranked in terms of foreign assets. The report is part of the Emerging Market Global Players (EMGP) Project, a long-term study of the rapid global expansion of MNEs from emerging markets. The present report, conducted in 2016, covers the 2015 annual year.

The EMGP methodology relies heavily on data received directly from relevant multinational firms. However, gathering the required information for Brazilian MNEs involved significant challenges. In particular, firms to which we reached out did not respond to requests to participate in a survey and the financial information that we were soliciting via the survey was not always readily available through other public sources. We received 12 fully or partially filled questionnaires. This report therefore identifies and analyzes only companies that are listed on the São Paulo Stock Exchange (BM&FBovespa) and that have publicly reported either primary or secondary data on foreign assets, foreign sales and foreign employees for the year of 2015.

As a result of this methodology, we do not have in our sample large MNEs in the construction industry, which, in terms of their representativeness and overseas operations should be included in any ranking of top Brazilian multinationals. Moreover, the fact that some of these particular enterprises are also being investigated in relation to alleged corruption and involvement in overpriced contracts with state-owned organizations exacerbated difficulties in gathering data from them.

It is our hope and expectation to be able to provide enhanced reports on Brazilian MNEs over time as companies communicate more information about their international activities to researchers and to publicly accessible sources.

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