The Top 100 Global Innovators
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The group of 100 organizations that has risen to the top of this year’s list proves that innovation is closely aligned with corporate strategy. As a group, the 2013 Top 100 global innovators outperformed the S&P 500 on virtually every metric of business success: stock price, revenues and new job creation. This is not by accident. The group outspent the S&P 500 on R&D by a margin of 8.8 percent.
The Thomson Reuters Top 100 Global Innovators represent the vanguard of 21st century innovation. They are a group of businesses and research institutions that recognize that great ideas are only half of the strategic equation. The other essential component is the protection of those ideas with intellectual property rights, so they can be commercialized and leveraged around the world – therefore reaching their full potential.
North America continues to lead in representation overall, with 46 of the 100 from this region of the world.
Asia has the next greatest representation, with 28 from Japan, 3 from S. Korea, and 1 from Taiwan. This is the first year that an organization outside of Japan and S. korea has made the list. Taiwan semiconductor (TsmC) is that new entrant.
Europe completes the list of 100. France dominates the European landscape in terms of innovation. This is in large part due to the government and innovation policies in that country. The French government instituted an R&D tax credit reform in 2008.
The UK is noticeably absent from the list again this year. This is primarily the result of its more service-based economy, with large representation from the financial and real estate sectors. additionally, the u.k. government does not incent innovation like France and other nations, which impacts its ability to attract and retain large, innovative organizations.
The Semiconductors & Electronic Components sector prevails in its presence on the list. There are 23 such companies this year, up 28% over last year when there were 18 semiconductor organizations. Of the full group, Samsung Electronics takes the lead in overall patent volume.
Computer Hardware is the next most prolific sector, with 11 companies comprising this group. Its representation is the proof of the growing dependence on semiconductor technology for everything from computers and phones to automobiles and appliances.
Scientific Research Centers dropped sharply in their representation on this year’s list, the majority of which were lost from S. Korea. Absent from this year’s list are Government Agencies. This is not an indication that such organizations are not innovating, but rather that other sectors are innovating at a faster rate for the period covered.
The Pharmaceutical sector tripled in its presence on the list, from one to three companies this year. This change in pharma representation is related to the end of the blockbuster drug era and the growth of the era of more personalized or precision medicine. Traditional molecule-based companies, while very innovative, tend not to innovate at the same pace as the high tech industry. However, precision medicine is opening new avenues and creating new opportunities for pharmaceutical companies that may not mean putting all of their proverbial eggs (innovation) in one basket.
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Resource Top 100 Innovators Report. Thanks to Jim Vallandingham for his analysis of the New York Times' bubble chart for Obama's 2013 budget.