Dell Topples Wal-Mart from America's 'Most Admired' List

25 February 2005

After two years at the top of the heap, Wal-Mart has been dethroned by Dell Computer from Fortune magazine's Most Admired Company list.

Dell stormed up the rankings from fifth position last year, while the mighty Wal-Mart was relegated to fourth place.

This year's survey polled 582 Fortune 1,000 companies across sixty-five industries. The rankings were determined by 10,000 executives, directors and securities analysts, while the top twenty-five non-US companies were also questioned.

And the 2005 top ten are ...

    1. Dell Computer
    2. General Electric
    3. Starbucks
    4. Wal-Mart Stores
    5. Southwest Airlines
    6. FedEx
    7. Berkshire Hathaway
    8. Microsoft
    9. Johnson & Johnson
    10. Procter & Gamble.
Comments Fortune writer Abrahm Lustgarten: "Corporate reputation is the product of alchemy — a mixture of everything from the way a company nurtures homegrown talent to how it manages its balance sheet.

"Throw in one part customer satisfaction, another part shareholder return, add a splash of community citizenship—and voila! — you have a measure of that company's station in the hierarchy of American business."

The full list of rankings across all business sectors is accessible at

Data sourced from (UK); additional content by WARC staff