Apple’s explosive success since the launch of the iPad has helped propel the company higher up the ladder of of the Fortune 500. This year the company broke into the top 20 – nabbing the number 17 spot.
The higher ranking shows consistent growth by Apple – last year the company broke into the top 50 to land at number 35. In 2010 and 2009, the company scored 56 and 71 respectively.
Apple landed in second place in its Fortune industry group behind HP, which took the top spot and also scored higher than Apple overall. In the overall ranking HP was seven steps above Apple at number 10.
Looking at that progress really shows how explosive Apple’s growth has been over the past fews years. Of course, the same can be said about watching Apple’s giant cash horde grow over the past couple of years – though the company’s cash as a metric will fall as Apple moves forward with a stock buy-back and begins offering shareholder dividends.
Apple posted another consecutive record-breaking quarter two weeks ago.
Exxon Mobil, Wal-Mart Stores, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, and General Motors made up the top five of this year’s Fortune 500 list.