India and China have tied for top place on 2010 Forbes Asia's Fab 50 List with 16 firms each.
India had 16 entries on the annual roster of the best 50 big-capitalisation and profitable companies in the region list, compared with 13 last year and only three when the inaugural Fab 50 List was published in 2005. A lot of Indian companies displayed staying power with 11 firms returning to the list.
Perennial top performer Infosys Technologies joins the roster for the sixth straight year. Making their appearance for the fifth consecutive time are Bharat Heavy Electricals, HDFC Bank and Larsen & Toubro. Other Indian returnees include ITC and Axis Bank.
China, which has topped the list since 2008, held steady with 16 entries, unchanged from last year. Of these, 10 firms are returnees including Lenovo Group. The company commands the biggest share of the PC market in China, and makes the list for the fourth time after dropping out last year.
Indian firms on the list are: Adani Enterprises, Axis Bank, Bharat Heavy Electricals, Dr. Reddy's Laboratories, HCL Technologies, HDFC Bank, Hindalco Industries, Infosys Technologies, ITC, Jindal Steel & Power, JSW Steel, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Larsen & Toubro, Mahindra & Mahindra, Sterlite Industries and Tata Consultancy Services.
The Fab 50 List appears in the latest issue of Forbes Asia. The 50 firms were picked from a shortlist of 936 that had revenues or market capitalisation of at least $3 billion as of Sep 1, and a 5-year record for revenue, operating earnings and return on capital. Other criteria included recent financial result, share price movement and outlook.
This year, Hong Kong and Taiwan tied for third place with four companies each. Hong Kong's Li & Fung is the other firm apart from Infosys that has made the Fab 50 in all 6 years since the list began. Taiwan's Acer, the world's number 2 PC maker, has made the list every year except in 2006.
Coming in fifth is South Korea with three entries: Glovis, NHN and Samsung Engineering. Following behind are Australia and Japan with two entries each while Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand rounded off the list with one entry each.
The number of Japanese firms making the cut has declined over the years since the list started in 2005. Japan topped the inaugural list with 13 firms but since then its entries have dwindled along with the country's economic stagnation.