If You Thought These Companies Are Still American, You Are Wrong

Published on 08/23/2020
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From Starbucks to Apple, many of the biggest companies in the world started in the United States. Before these businesses became leaders in their own fields, they had been small ventures. The world of business is never as straightforward as it might seem, however. A company might have been founded on US soil, but this does not mean that it will forever be based there. In fact, you will be surprised to hear that these brands have since ceased to be American. From IBM to Ben and Jerry’s to Holiday Inn, foreign investors have a big role in the future of these companies! If they had not swooped in at the right time, many of these businesses might no longer even be around.

If You Thought These Companies Are Still American, You Are Wrong

If You Thought These Companies Are Still American, You Are Wrong

General Electric

In 1982, General Electric got its start as a pretty small brand. It has since grown at an exponential rate, however. It now dabbles in many other industries from healthcare to aviation to venture capital to power. This is one of those brands that feel very homegrown, partly thanks to the “Made in America” stamp on the products. But the truth is that it has been owned by a Chinese company called Haier ever since 2016. GE was purchased for $5.4 billion, which is definitely on the high end of things. Even though the products continue to be made in the United States, the decisions are ultimately made in China.

General Electric

General Electric

AMC

For about an entire century, AMC cinemas have been giving movie lovers relaxing and fun moviegoing experiences. This company made a name for itself in this industry and even went on to be the biggest movie theatre chain on the planet. Even though the initials stand for American Multi-Cinema, the truth is that a Chinese company called Dalian Wanda Group had been the majority stakeholder from 2012 to 2018. In 2018, however, this changed a bit after Silver Lake Partners bought a $600 million stake in it. Despite this, Wanda Group is still the one who gets to call the shots in terms of executive-level decisions.

AMC

AMC

Budweiser

In terms of beers, there are folks who assume that it does not get any more American than this. It might have been true in the past, but the truth is that this is no longer an American company even though it was founded in Missouri and continues to say “America” on the container. In 2008, this company was bought by a Belgium beer powerhouse called InBev for $52 billion. It might have an American past, but we can’t exactly say the same thing about its future. At any rate, we are just glad that the parent company did not change the formula. It tastes exactly the same as it used to!

Budweiser

Budweiser

Ben & Jerry’s

This ice cream company has become a pop-culture staple over the years. As one of the most beloved food in the United States, Ben & Jerry’s has been mentioned countless times in TV shows and movies. In 1978, a pair of best friends called Jerry Greenfield and Ben Cohen founded it as an ice cream parlor in Vermont. Things changed in 2000 when Unilever purchased it for a cool $326 million. The London-based conglomerate was the highest bidder among three companies interested in taking over the ice cream company. This turned out to be a great deal since this decision helped improve Unilever’s portfolio.

Ben & Jerry’s

Ben & Jerry’s

Burger King

A lot of people think of the United States when they think of fast food. There are a lot of homegrown chains out there, and Burger King is one of them. David Egerton and James McLamore opened the first store under the name “Insta Burger King” in Miami in 1954. They had no idea that it was going to turn into an international brand. They sold the company for the first time a decade after that. It has since gone through a number of different owners. At the moment, it is owned by a Canadian company called Restaurant Brands International. BK still gets financial backing from 3G Capital from New York City.

Burger King

Burger King

Trader Joe’s

There has always been fierce competition when it comes to the convenience store sector. This is even truer in more populated spaces. In 1967, a man called Joe Coulombe began to stock food items that were unusual and rare to entice customers to ditch 7-Eleven and instead go to his store in Monrovia, California. His plan worked. Even though it went on to a big name, he sold the company in 1979. It is now owned by Theo Albrecht, who also owns a huge supermarket chain called Aldi Nord in Germany. He comes from a wealthy family and is believed to have a net worth of more than $16 billion! Whoa.

Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s

Lucky Strike

It feels like Lucky Strike, also known as Luckies, is the most popular American cigarette brand out there. In the ‘30s and ‘40s, people smoked the product because it had such a strong marketing plan. This was the reason the brand became the best-selling cigarette brand back then. In 1976, the company started its business relationship with a company called British American Tobacco. In 1994, the UK company purchased the American Tobacco Company and its subsidiaries, Lucky Strike and Pall Mall. Even though it has gone through a number of changes, it is still considered to be a quintessentially American brand. This can be attributed to its presence in pop culture. The brand was heavily featured in Mad Men!

Lucky Strike

Lucky Strike

American Apparel

Folks could not help but be drawn to American Apparel thanks in part to its “Made in USA – Sweatshop-free” slogan. It was a great idea to make ethical shoppers support the LA brand. The company had been doing very well until 2015, at which point it started to struggle to get back on track. Two years after that, a Canadian company called Gildan Activewear saved it by buying rights to its name and manufacturing equipment for $88 million. If this did not happen, we doubt that American Apparel would still be around in this day and age. If you want to be literal about it, the brand is still technically based in the Americas.

American Apparel

American Apparel

7-Eleven

Every single great company in the world started with one person who had a dream. This was also true for 7-Eleven. In 1927, Jefferson Green had been an average Joe working at Southland Ice when he decided to improve his range of products. He started to offer bread, eggs, and milk as well. It turned out to be an effective business model, and his Dallas-based business improved even more once he renamed it 7-Eleven after its store hours. Decades later, it is a staple in American culture. It went through a rough patch during the 1987 financial crash, however. This was when a Japanese company called Ito-Yokado swooped in to help it out. This is the reason it has since become a subsidiary of Seven & i Holdings.

7 Eleven

7 Eleven

Sunglass Hut

For a lot of American eyewear lovers, the best place to shop would be Sunglass Hut. The company offers everything you might need from tinted shades to clear glasses. It has a presence in South Africa, India, the United Kingdom, and more. Despite this, the company is the brainchild of an optometrist by the name of Sanford Ziff and started in Miami, Florida. Five years after it launched its 100th location in 1986, the company was sold. In 2001, the Luxottica group bought it for $653 million. In those days, there were more than 1,300 stores in existence. At the moment, there are nearly 2,000 stores all over the world!

Sunglass Hut

Sunglass Hut

Hellman’s

You probably know Hellman’s for its mayonnaise! There is a good chance that you might even have a jar of it in your own fridge right now. In 1905, Richard Hellmann’s made his recipe by bringing the French condiment to the American market with a twist. Customers at his shop liked it so much that he sold it on its own. In 1932, Best Foods bought the business and kept it going for 70 more years. In 2000, Unilever bought Hellman’s for a cool $20.3 billion. This is not bad at all for a simple dip made in New York City!

Hellman’s

Hellman’s

Motorola

Best known for its tech products, Motorola started in Schaumburg, Illinois a long time before we were even introduced to the concept of mobile phones. After it was launched in 1928, it saw steady growth until it reached the peak of its success with flip phones and the like. Google eventually bought it, only to sell it to a Chinese company called Lenovo in 2014. This did not prove to be a profitable move for Google since it bought the company for $12.billion two years before it sold it for $2.9 billion. Even today, people are still puzzled why Google seemed to be comfortable losing $10 billion with this deal.

Motorola

Motorola

Ironman

The Ironmen competition got its start as part of the Hawaii Triathlon Corporation. In 1990, Dr. James P. Gills bought it for $3 million. It has since become a significantly bigger entity than it had been at the start. In 2008, Providence Equity Securities acquired the company for $85 million. Seven years after that, the Dalian Wanda Group bought it for $650 million! It turns out that the Chinese company even had to shoulder the debt from the previous owner to do so. Even though it had been successful even before the current setup, Wanda had been thrilled over the 40% year after year net growth that it saw.

Ironman

Ironman

Forbes

In September 1917, Forbes introduced its very first issue. Can you believe that it has been 103 years since then? It has since become a trusted magazine that released definitive and reliable rankings of celebrities and companies. We are sure that you have at least heard of its popular lists such as the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women and 30 Under 30. Even though people assume that it is an American publication, the truth is that it has is now owned by a Hong Kong-based company called Integrated Whale Media Investments. It purchased Forbes for $400 million in 2014. We doubt that the readers have noticed anything different before and after the deal was made, however.

Forbes

Forbes

Dirt Devil

For more than a hundred years now, Dirt Devil vacuum cleaners have helped American homes stay clean. In 1905, the product was invented by Philip Geier in Cleveland, Ohio. The product range has since expanded with more than 25 million units sold. This is largely thanks to the unique Cyclone system. Even though its HQ is still in North Carolina, the company is proudly owned by a Chinese company called Techtronic Industries. Dirt Devil is not the only household appliance brand that it owns since it also bought Hoover a couple of years ago. We are sure that these decisions have helped the HK-based company improve its appliance investment portfolio!

Dirt Devil

Dirt Devil

Good Humor

Baby boomers have a special fondness for Good Humor ice cream. The company has been around for over a century now and is best known for its ice cream trucks. It was launched in Ohio back in the ’20s and has not looked back since then! In 1961, Thomas J. Lipton of Unilever bought the company. Even though the United States division of this British-Dutch company is now operated by Lipton, we can’t deny that things have only improved for Good Humor since then. After all, the brand has since expanded its range to include a wider variety of products while still enjoying a great consumer base in the country.

Good Humor

Good Humor

Popsicle

Wait until you hear the fascinating history of this company! The Popsicle recipe was created by an 11-year-old boy from Oakland, California after accidentally leaving his drink outside with a stick in it for an entire night. When he retrieved it the following day, he found it frozen solid! When Francis Epperson grew up, he introduced it to the world. It became an instant hit, and he sold the rights to it to Joe Lowe in 1925. However, he regretted this decision and even said, “I haven’t been the same since.” In 1989, its former rival company Good Humor purchased Popsicle while it was a Unilever subsidiary. In effect, this means that it is now owned by the same English-Dutch parent company as well.

Popsicle

Popsicle

Purina

In 1894, Purina got its start when George Robinson, William H. Danforth, and William Andrews began to feed farm animals. They had no idea that their creation was going to make them very rich. Even though Nestle is more famous for its food items than pet products, the Swiss company bought Purina for $10.3 billion in December 2011 anyway. This decision came out under the plan to merge Purina and Friskies PetCare, the company’s pet food company. At any rate, Purina continues to be a household staple not only in the United States but all over the world as well.

Purina

Purina

Firestone

The tire brand Firestone got the opportunity to merge with an Italian company called Pirelli. However, the deal did not sit right. This was the reason Firestone instead chose to sell to a Japanese company called Bridgestone Corp. The Tokyo-based corporation bought it for $2.6 million, which meant that a share cost $80. This decision made Bridgestone the second-biggest tire manufacturer in the country. A Firestone representative told the Los Angeles Times, “The Bridgestone offer achieves our objective of enhancing shareholder values and will add materially to the employment security and career opportunities available to the men and women employed by Firestone’s existing businesses.”

Firestone

Firestone

Gerber

Nestle announced that it was planning to shell out $5.5 billion for the acquisition of Gerber Products Company in 2007. It had been the right move because this meant that the Swiss company now had the biggest slice in the baby food sector. It is a very profitable market. The baby food retailer has been in the industry since 1927 after Daniel Frank Gerber’s wife began to cook baby food for Sally, their daughter. He thought of selling the product, and they soon introduced five different products to the market. It goes without saying that the company has come a long way since its humble beginnings in New Jersey!

Gerber

Gerber

Citgo

Founded in Oklahoma back in 1910, Citgo became a huge marketer and refiner of fuels and the like. In 1986, a Venezuelan company called Petróleos de Venezuela bought half of it and turned into its parent company. Sadly, things have not been going all that well for it. President Hugo Chavez let the world know that he wanted to let go of Citgo, saying that it was “bad business” that resulted in falling profits. The sale did not happen as they sold bonds instead. In 2013, the South American nation was going through an economic depression. It was offered as debt collateral to Russia, but the future is uncertain.

Citgo

Citgo

IBM (PC Division)

Ever since it was founded in IBM, this company has helped the United States stay on top when it comes to tech. In those days, it was more involved in business machines more than computers. IBM has a truly fascinating past, to say the least. In 2004, Lenovo bought its PC division for $1.75 billion. “As Lenovo’s founder, I am excited by this breakthrough in Lenovo’s journey towards becoming an international company,” shared Chuanzhi Liu, who was the CEO of Lenovo back then. On the other hand, IBM CEO Sam Palmisano shared his thoughts by saying, “Today’s announcement further strengthens IBM’s ability to capture the highest-value opportunities in a rapidly changing information technology industry.”

IBM (PC Division)

IBM (PC Division)

Legendary Entertainment Group

After Dalian Wanda Group bought AMC and saw great success in the movie industry, it decided to go all in by buying a movie studio in 2016. Legendary Entertainment Group turned over its ownership to the Chinese company in a deal worth $3.5 billion. At the time, Dalian Wanda Group wanted to absorb it into its existing portfolio. However, it eventually reached the decision to just operate it as it was. It has been four years since the purchase, so let us take a look at how things are going for LEG. Ever since the acquisition, it has produced movies such as Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Pacific Rim: Uprising, Kong: Skull Island, and Skyscraper!

Legendary Entertainment Group

Legendary Entertainment Group

Hoover US

Ever since it opened its doors in 1908, Hoover has made a name for itself as a trusted American appliance brand. Named after founder William Henry Hoover, the company is now considered to be an iconic brand. Even though things remained local for the longest time, things changed after Techtronic Industries bought it for $107 million in 2006. You will still find the HQ in North Carolina, but the central office is now in Hong Kong. The Chinese company is huge with a staff of more than 30,000 members and yearly sales of more than $7.7 billion. While it is no longer an American company, it is in good hands.

Hoover US

Hoover US

Frigidaire

Originally called the Guardian Frigerator Company, Frigidaire got its start in Indiana back in 1918. While the idea behind it came from Alfred Mellowes and Nathaniel B. Wales, they did not have enough money to get it going. This is where William C. Durant of General Motors came in! He invested in the company, which made it possible for the duo to bring it to where it is now. In 1979, it was under the ownership of the White Sewing Machine Company. However, a Swedish company called Electrolux bought it in 1986. Frigidaire continues to be a subsidiary of this company to this day, but it seems to be doing just fine.

Frigidaire

Frigidaire

Strategic Hotels And Resorts

This hotel chain currently has 17 luxury hotels across the United States and one in Germany. Strategic Hotels and Resorts got its start in 1997. It was the brainchild of a philanthropist and real estate investor by the name of Laurence S. Geller. A Chinese company called Anbang Insurance Group was allegedly looking at buying it for $6.5 million in 2016. However, it looks like the deal was renegotiated in the end because the insurance company ended up buying the hotel chain for $1 million less. This had something to do with the fact that one of the properties could not be sold. The US government banned it from going through because it was close to a navy base.

Strategic Hotels And Resorts

Strategic Hotels And Resorts

Alka-Seltzer

One of the oldest branded medicines in the world is Alka-Seltzer. Dr. Miles Medicine Company, now known as Miles Laboratories, started to sell this pain relief and antacid drink all the way back in 1931. While it had been in American hands for a long period of time, a German company known as Bayer bought it in 1978. Bayer has a reputation for rubbing shoulders with the greatest pharmaceutical companies on the planet. In 2004, it even struck a deal with GlaxoSmithKline to collaborate on a joint campaign to improve the sales of Levitra with the use of the “Strike Up A Conversation” tag line.

Alka Seltzer

Alka-Seltzer

The Chrysler Building

In 2019, a lot of people were surprised when The Wall Street Journal ran the story about the sale of the Chrysler Building. After all, this was considered to be one of the most iconic structures in the New York skyline. However, the truth is that it has not been in the hands of an American for quite some time. In 2008, the Abu Dhabi Investment Council bought the majority ownership for $800 million. It was then bought by an Austrian company called SIGNA for north of $150 million a decade after that. When it came out, this was seen as a huge loss that made headlines in various financial outlets across the world.

The Chrysler Building

The Chrysler Building

General Motors

Did you know that General Motors holds the title of the largest automobile manufacturer in the United States? It is one of the largest companies in the industry in the whole world, so it is a very appealing and profitable business. Even though it is not completely owned by Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp, it still relies on the Chinese company to keep money coming in. The two companies started a joint venture back in 1998. Customers might not know it, but SAIC sells cars by using the General Motors name. At any rate, they are two separate companies as the SAIC HQ is in Shanghai, whereas the GM one is in Detroit.

General Motors

General Motors

Spotify

At this point in time, it is hard for us to imagine a time when we could not listen to our favorite songs with just the click of a button. We are so thankful that Spotify has made this possible! The New York-based company was founded in 2006 and became known for providing listeners the ability to stream music. While it has Swedish origins, it has traveled to many other countries since then. In 2017, Spotify and Tencent Holdings purchased a 10% stake in each other. The joint venture had been effective at helping Spotify enter the Chinese market and letting Tencent expand its portfolio even more. Before they teamed up for this, the streaming company struggled to grow its presence in the Chinese market.

Spotify

Spotify

The Waldorf Astoria Hotel

When it comes to luxury accommodation, the Waldorf Astoria Hotel is a great choice. It is not just an institution in New York, but it is also a part of history in the United States. While Hilton Worldwide manages the hotel, Anbang Insurance Group bought it for $1.95 billion in 2014. This unbelievable price makes it the most expensive hotel in history. The Chinese company made huge changes to the hotel and turned a chunk of its rooms into condos. The insurance company is also interested in buying even more American businesses. One of the properties that it had been looking at would be Starwood Resorts.

The Waldorf Astoria Hotel

The Waldorf Astoria Hotel

Tesla

Known as the brains behind Tesla, Elon Musk is the majority shareholder of the California-based company with his 21.7% stake. Aside from him, the company has a lot of shareholders such as Tencent Holdings Ltd. It turns out that the Chinese company is not only interested in music but in a number of things as well. Tencent also happens to be the biggest video game company in the world and one of the hugest social media companies. In 2019, it even boasted a $95.8 billion net income. Whatever they are doing, it is clear that they are doing things right! We are sure that it will grow some more in the future.

Tesla

Tesla

Snapchat

Without Snapchat, we doubt that the trend of using silly filters on our photos would have come to be. In 2011, Bobby Murphy and Evan Spiegel launched the app without any idea of just how big it was going to be. Right now, Snapchat is believed to be worth more than $20 billion. In 2017, Chinese company Tencent was able to extend its reach to Snapchat as well. This tech giant paid more than $2 billion to get a 10% stake in the social media company in the hopes of getting a nifty return. Aside from that, Tencent also helped Snapchat by developing the augmented reality features with the use of its tech expertise.

Snapchat

Snapchat

Ingram Micro

In 1979, Ingram Micro started out as a small tech product distributor. It was able to turn into a multi-billion-dollar company after doing so! In the early ‘90s, it was able to take over a Belgium company by the name of Softinvest. This move gave Ingram the chance to distribute HP products and gain an even bigger foothold on the market. In 2016, a Chinese company under the HNA Group called Tianjin Tianhai Investment bought Ingram for $6 billion. This made it one of the biggest earners of the parent company in its entire portfolio. On the other hand, this also gave Ingram an even bigger international presence.

Ingram Micro

Ingram Micro

Fidelity & Guaranty Life

Ever since it was founded in Des Moines, Illinois back in 1959, Fidelity and Guaranty Life Insurance Company has helped millions of folks secure their future. With that said, its own future had not been all that safe. Harbinger Group used to own it, but the parent company opened it up to the public in 2013. Anbang Insurance Group was interested in it and bought F&G for $1.57 billion. It looked like all was going well until the Chinese company terminated the deal at the last minute. After the sudden change of plans, CF Corp bought F&G for around $1.84 billion in 2017.

Fidelity & Guaranty Life

Fidelity & Guaranty Life

Universal Music Group

Any budding artist would be happy to snag a record deal with Universal Music Group. It is one of the “Big Three” record companies alongside Warner Music Group and Sony Music. UMG has been in the industry for nearly a century now. It has helped grow a lot of homegrown musicians, but the truth is that it no longer an entirely American company. A French company called Vivendi had the majority stake in it for more than a decade, but it eventually struck a deal with Tencent in 2020. The Shenzhen-based company paid $33.4 billion to get a 10% share in the record company.

Universal Music Group

Universal Music Group

WeWork

We are sure that you have noticed the rise of shared workspaces over the past years. This setup is very attractive to freelancers and startups. WeWork took advantage of this when it was launched a decade ago. It now manages more than 4 million sq. m. of space! However, it went through a pretty rough patch and needed more capital in 2016. That was when a Beijing-based company called Legend Holdings Corp. became a “new partner” and poured more than $430 million into the company. John Zhao of Legend Holdings Corp. even went as far as to say, “Our investment in WeWork is both strategic and obvious.”

WeWork

WeWork

Segway Inc

A few decades ago, people would have thought that the idea of whizzing around on two wheels was something straight out of a sci-fi film. Segway Inc. has proven to us that this can be done in real life as well. A Beijing-based company called Ninebot bought the transportation company for $80 million in 2015. Things have only gotten better for Segway since then because the Chinese company helped it attain a larger foothold in the world of tech and robotics. In 2018, the company announced that it was planning to move its production sector from New Hampshire to China. However, it eventually took it back to say that the majority of production was going to remain in Bedford.

Segway Inc

Segway Inc

John Hancock Life Insurance

There are plenty of different products sold under the John Hancock Financial Opportunities label. However, it is no secret that the company is best known for its life insurance policies. It has been in operation ever since it was founded in Boston in 1862. In 2004, however, a Canadian company called Manulife Financial acquired it. Even though the new parent company could have simply absorbed the John Hancock brand, it chose to keep it under its original name. Manulife Financial is based in Toronto, employs more than 34,000 staff members, and has 63,000 agents working for the brand.

John Hancock Life Insurance

John Hancock Life Insurance

Sotheby’s

You might be surprised to hear that a Chinese life insurance company had an interest in a luxury art broker. Sotheby’s got its start in London back in 1744. However, it eventually opened a shop in New York City before opening more locations across the globe after that. In 2016, a Chinese company called Taikang Life Insurance Co. Ltd. Announced that it is the new majority shareholder of Sotheby’s. It stayed that way until a French-Israeli businessman by the name of Patrick Drahi bought Sotheby’s in 2019. We do not know the fate of the 13.5% stake that the Chinese insurance group has in the company, however.

Sotheby’s

Sotheby’s

The Barclays Center

Any sports fan and music lover will be familiar with the iconic Barclays Center. In 2019, a Taiwanese-Canadian businessman magnate by the name of Joseph Tsai finalized the purchase of this legendary venue. Aside from that, the Alibaba Group chairman purchased the Brooklyn Nets of the NBA. “With full ownership of the Nets and Barclays Center, we will continue to bring our exciting brand of basketball to our fans,” Tsai said back then. He went on, “We’ve made a strong commitment to Brooklyn and it will be a privilege to present the best of Barclays Center with its great entertainment to our community.”

The Barclays Center

The Barclays Center

Brookstone Inc

In the mid-‘60s, Brookstone Inc. got its start as a mail-order business that sold special and rare tools. After some time, it started to sell various items such as alarm clocks, remote control toys, and more. By 2018, it had 34 locations in the United States. In 2014, however, it went through difficult times and even filed for bankruptcy. It was a good thing that Chinese companies called Sanpower and Sailing Capital rescued it by purchasing it for $173 million. We are glad that they stepped in at the right time so that Brookstone did not go under completely. People were relieved when the company was finally able to come out of bankruptcy a couple of months later in July 2014.

Brookstone Inc

Brookstone Inc

Dairy Farmers of America Inc

Who would have thought that a company with a name like the Dairy Farmers of America is actually associated with China? It might seem unlikely, but it is true! In 2014, Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group teamed up with DFA to make milk powder in a new processing plant. It happened at around the same time that China could not produce milk thanks to a drought in New Zealand. This meant that the supply in the country was cut off. In an effort to combat the problem, the Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group upped its international presence. Even though it does not own DFA, the two of them are bedfellows.

Dairy Farmers Of America Inc

Dairy Farmers Of America Inc

Fab.com Inc

The truth is that any business in the online design industry faces a lot of competition. Fab.com Inc used to be based in New York, but it has since secured a large investment worth about a billion dollars from Tencent Holdings. Fab had said that it hoped to go into the Asian market. “It’s a way to enter markets through strategic partners who can help mitigate risk and will increase the likelihood of success,” shared CEO Jason Goldberg. Two years later, a company called PCH International bought the company in 2015. After this happened, it has since been rebranded into a wellness brand that specializes in yoga gear.

Fab.com Inc

Fab.com Inc

The Cleveland Cavaliers

In 1970, the team in the NBA entered the league with the help of sponsors. The Cleveland Cavaliers kept growing in the decades that followed after that. Among others, it received backing from Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company. In 2019, however, they started to get overseas investors as well. The Cavs teamed up with a Chinese businessman called Jianhua, who had previously partnered with the New York Yankees and other American sports teams. Reports say that he purchased a 15% stake in the NBA team. There is no need to be shocked as it is not really unusual for sports teams to receive investment from foreign sources. This is also the reason Lebron James has such a huge following in China!

The Cleveland Cavaliers

The Cleveland Cavaliers

Riot Games Inc

Anyone who plays the multiplayer online gaming phenomenon League of Legends will be familiar with Riot Games. Released in 2009, the game went on to accumulate a large following and became the best-known product of the company. Even though Riot Games has been working with Tencent for a long time already, their partnership reached its peak in 2015. The Chinese company purchased the rest of the stakes and became the parent company of Riot Games. Before this happened, it already owned 93% of the gaming company. With this in mind, we are under the impression that the new development was already a given. The value of Riot Games is said to be $6 billion.

Riot Games Inc

Riot Games Inc

Uber Technologies Inc

It is difficult for us to imagine what life would be like without Uber! The app lets users catch a ride with the click of a button. Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp came up with the idea in 2009. It has come a long way since then! Now a multi-billion dollar company, it is a household name not only in the United States but also in other parts of the globe. In 214, a Chinese internet company called Baidu Inc. invested north of $600 million in the hopes of helping its expansion into China. It was a mutually beneficial move since it allowed Baidu to use the app to grow its own mobile payment service. We are glad that it worked out!

Uber Technologies Inc

Uber Technologies Inc

OmniVision Technologies Inc

OmniVision Technologies Inc. and Will Semiconductor Co. Ltd entered a partnership so quietly that the public did not hear about it until an entire year later. When the story broke out in April 2019, they had already entered transactions worth over $2.1 billion. Since they did things so lowkey, we do not know a lot of the details that surrounded the sale. However, we do know that OmniVision first started talking with Chinese investors in 2015. This was around the time when a couple of Chinese companies teamed up to purchase the California-based company for $1.9 billion. People are still baffled why an unknown Chinese company like Will Semiconductor Co. Ltd decided to take over it.

OmniVision Technologies Inc

OmniVision Technologies Inc

Baby Trend Inc

Founded in Fontana, California, this baby product company offers everything from car seats to highchairs to diaper pails. It kept growing over the years, especially once it was purchased by a Chinese company called Alpha Group. “We are excited to offer safe, educational, and entertaining solutions to infants and their caregivers around the world,” Alpha Group Vice-President Wang Jing said. “Acquiring Baby Trend will allow us to bring our innovative technology and outstanding intellectual properties into a whole new category while showcasing our existing expertise in the baby and infant market globally.”

Baby Trend Inc

Baby Trend Inc

University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

In 2012, a lot of people felt puzzled when they learned that a Beijing-based company called Concord Medical services purchased a fifth of the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Proton Therapy Center. Even though it did not really affect the ownership stakes of the university, it boosted the profile of the Chinese company. “Proton treatment has become a widely accepted method of radiation therapy,” explained Dr. Jianyu Yang. He is the medical chairman and CEO of Concord Medical. “Concord Medical plans to build and operate two proton centers in China. This transaction will enable us to gain valuable experience and knowledge of the operations of a proton therapy center from the world leader in proton therapy cancer care.”

University Of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

University Of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Hilton Hotels

Conrad Hilton founded Hilton Hotels & Resorts in 1919. Yes, it means that it has been in operation for more than an entire century by now! From a handful of locations, Hilton has turned into a household name. It now has 586 hotels across 85 countries. In 2016, a Chinese aviation and shipping company known as HNA Group bought a 25% stake in the hotel chain for $6.5 billion. It then became the biggest shareholder of the company. Earlier that year, HNA also purchased Carlson Hotels in an effort to go into the hospitality industry. When Hilton was sold to HNA, it had been worth approximately $26 billion.

Hilton Hotels

Hilton Hotels

Starplex Cinemas

The truth is that Starplex Cinemas did not ever reach the same amount of success that AMC did. It only has 34 locations in the United States, after all. Many Americans have never set foot in their theaters simply because it does not have a presence in many places in the country. In 2015, AMC Theaters purchased it for $175 million. The locations were then converted into AMC Classics locations. We have already told you that AMC is now controlled by a Chinese group called Dalian Wanda Group. In 2017, Starplex has disappeared into obscurity once all the theaters were transformed into AMC locations. This essentially means that it has been swallowed whole by both Dalian Wanda Group and AMC!

Starplex Cinemas

Starplex Cinemas

California Grapes International Inc

This one started out as a homegrown brand in the Californian city of San Jose. But things changed for California Grapes International Inc. after China Food Services Corp. bought it. It used to have a focus on wine distribution, but it has been forced to fade into obscurity. The amount of the purchase has not been disclosed by either party. Founded in 1992, what exactly is China Food Services Corp anyway? It has said that it “is engaged in marketing, distribution, and selling of food and beverages though-out Asia and the Middle East. It owns and operates Golden Dragon Food & Beverage Import & Export Company of Hong Kong, Ltd.”

California Grapes International Inc

California Grapes International Inc

Fisher-Price

This toy-making company has been in the industry since 1930. While the HQ is found in the United States, Fisher-Price has a bunch of contracts with overseas vendors. On top of that, it has 11 factories in China. Through its parent company Mattel, Fisher-Price was featured on the news back in 2007. Various media outlets covered the recall of a million toys that had been made in those factories. Apparently, these products came with excessive amounts of lead. This material can be hazardous to the health of children. Let us not forget that the company primarily makes toys for very young children, so this was extremely concerning to learn.

Fisher Price

Fisher-Price

Hush Puppies

This footwear brand was introduced to the world in 1958. Its parent company is Wolverine World Wide, which markets and licenses the products across 120 countries including the United States. The shoes are made in factories in different parts of the world, however. It had been in hot water during the mid-‘90s until it was rescued by current chairman Geoffrey Bloom. Even though a factory and the HQ are found in Rockford, Michigan, it cuts costs by outsourcing manufacturing abroad. The brand is known for using Scotchgard, which is a leather protector added during the tanning process to make the shoes more durable. The shoes are produced in factories located in Brazil, Vietnam, China, and more.

Hush Puppies

Hush Puppies

Gillette

A lot of people immediately think of Gillette when the topic of shaving razors come up. It is true that part of the blade is made in the United States. However, the razors, cartridges, and handles are made in Brazil, China, Mexico, and Poland. There is a factory in Boston, which has been around since the early 20th century. But as you will learn from the website, the demand for these products has gone up, which has called for its expansion. In 1992, Gillette made the attempt to meet the market demands by creating a plant in Shanghai. This has allowed the company the capability to make a billion razors per year.

Gillette

Gillette

Barbie

In 1959, Ruth Handler launched the beloved doll brand with the creation of the first Barbie. These dolls continue to be very popular even six decades later. Mattel, the parent company, reports that it sells 58 million dolls every year! This means that it sells more than 100 dolls per minute. Mattel makes a net revenue of $1.5 billion or so per year. Did you know that Barbies were never made in the United States? The first one was opened in Japan in 1959 as the country had been recovering from the Second World War. There are now four factories in the world, and they are found in China, Indonesia, and Malaysia.

Barbie

Barbie

Huffy

It is pretty impressive to hear that the bicycle supply company has been around for over a century already. Founded in Dayton, Ohio, it now has a number of subsidiaries. The list includes companies such as Gen-X Sports, Royce Union, Huffy Bicycle Co., and American Sports Design Co. George Huffman founded the company and named it after his old nickname. In late 1999, it shut down two of its plants in the United States and outsourced manufacturing abroad. At the moment, it has six plants in China, one in Taiwan, and one in Mexico. Before this, the plants in the United States had been located in the town of Celina in Ohio.

Huffy

Huffy

Oakley Sunglasses

Founded by an entrepreneur by the name James Jannard, Oakley started with a $300 investment. It is hard to believe that it has since become the iconic sunglass brand that it now is. In the past, a Milan-based company called Luxottica purchased it. Despite this, Oakley still has its HQ in Lake Forest, California. Founded in 1975, the company launched an IPO and raked in $230 million twenty years later. It has since expanded into other products such as ski goggles and chin guards. After James Jannard sold the company, he decided to go into a different industry and launched Red Digital Cinema in 2007.

Oakley Sunglasses

Oakley Sunglasses

Converse

Best known for its high-top canvas shoes, Converse got its start in Boston in 1908. However, it had no choice but to stop production when the Second World War erupted. During that period of time, it made shoes for the military. Once the war was over, it came back and kept certain features in its products. Things changed for Converse after it filed for bankruptcy in 2001. Athletic shoes giant Nike bought the brand to keep it afloat in 2003. With a parent company that owns many plants in China, it started to be manufactured abroad as well. The shoes are now made in India, China, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

Converse

Converse

Nike

Like we have just said, Nike has a lot of factories outside of the United States. In fact, it is said that one in five pairs are made in China! The athleticwear company has contracts with 180 manufacturers over there that then employs over 210,000 people. This makes the country the second-biggest Nike producer in the world, second only to Vietnam. Apart from these countries, the company also outsources manufacturing to Brazil, Japan, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia. The truth is that Nike has been trying to shrink its manufacturing in China. In 2012, one in three pairs were made over there, but the figure has since gone down to only one in five. Nike has never explained the reasoning behind this, however.

Nike

Nike

Levi’s

When you are thinking of buying denim items of clothing, you should consider getting them from Levi’s Jeans. The company has said that it has an annual net sale of $5.76 billion. Its products came into fashion during the ‘60s as the consumer base started to grow from blue-collar workers to other sectors. In the early ‘70s, the company went public. It has since expanded its operations to 50 countries across the globe. Nearly all of the products are made in Italy, China, Japan, and other countries outside of the United States. The 501 Jeans, however, are still produced in a factory located in North Carolina.

Levi’s

Levi’s

American Girl

We have another brand of dolls that is a hit in the United States! If you happen to own any old and antique versions of American Girl, you might be in for thousands of dollars. Pleasant Company, which made these dolls, was founded by Pleasant Rowland in 1998. At first, these products were only available via mail order. In 1998, Mattel bought the brand and made the toys more available to the general public. With an increase in demand came an increase in production. Even though the books are still made in Wisconsin, the dolls are made in Germany these days. Their accessories, however, are made in China but are then shipped to and assembled in Wisconsin.

American Girl

American Girl

Chevrolet

As one of the “Big Three” car companies, Chevrolet likes to mention the fact that it is made in America. Even though the cars are still assembled in its factories in Detroit, the parts actually come from China. More than half of the parts used in Chevy cars are made abroad. Take the Chevy Silverado for example. Only 46% of the parts are made in America. The Chevy Colorado is a little more American at 51%. The Corvette is the most American one! The automaker sells its cars in every country in the world but nine. They are popular in South Korea, where they are sold under the “Daewoo Motors” brand until 2011.

Chevrolet

Chevrolet

Radio Flyer

Headquartered in Chicago, Radio Flyer is best known as the maker of the red toy wagon. Aside from that, it also sells trikes, bikes, ride-ons, and toy horses. It has been in the industry for more than a century and has retained the location of its original HQ. In 2004, the toy company claimed to be “a Chicago brand.” However, it actually makes its tricycles, scooters, and many other toys in China. The one exception would be the plastic red wagon since it has always been made in Wisconsin. During its 80th anniversary, Radio Flyer made the biggest wagon in the world to commemorate the special event.

Radio Flyer

Radio Flyer

Craftsman

You can find tools from Craftsman in stores such as Sears, Lowe’s, Walmart, Home Depot, and any other store that sells home improvement items. It has factories in the United States, but it outsources some of the manufacturing to China and Taiwan as well. Now owned by Sears, the parent company had been the one to make this call. The wrenches, ratchets, and sockets are made by Apex Tool Group in China and Taiwan. On the other hand, Craftsman has another contract with a different tool production company called Western Forge. This one makes the tools in the United States, which means that the products are produced between Asia and North America.

Craftsman

Craftsman

Samsonite

Jesse Shwayder founded this luggage company in Denver, Colorado in 1910. It remained in the West Coast for 91 years until it had to move across the country after a change in ownership. Samsonite now has its headquarters in Mansfield, Massachusetts. However, most of the products are actually made in Europe and Asia! The company has plants in China, India, and Hungary. The Nashik plant in India is responsible for making around 40% of the hard luggage that it sells. Aside from manufacturing and employment, this brand is highly popular in China in terms of sales as well! As a matter of fact, two-thirds of Samsonite products are sold in China through contract-manufacturers in the city of Shanghai.

Samsonite

Samsonite

Dell

We are sure that you have heard of Dell before since it is one of the biggest computer companies on the planet. Michael Dell started it in the ‘80s, but it has since split the manufacturing. The servers are all made in Austin, Texas. Even though the laptops were formerly made in the United States, it decided to outsource abroad. The company now has factories in Brazil, China, Ireland, Malaysia, and Mexico. The one in Limerick makes build-to-order products. It received a lot of media attention when it opened its doors in 2000! At a size of 40,000 sq. ft. and a staff made up of 23,000 people, it is actually one of the biggest factories that you will find in Ireland.

Dell

Dell

Smithfield

If you are looking for pork-based products, you will not find something that can beat Smithfield Foods. This company has been around since 1936, which was the year Joseph W. Luter and his son opened it. The business saw a steady increase until it became one of the biggest players in the meat industry with more than 500 farms in the United States. In 2013, it was bought by WH Group for $4.72 billion. Back then, this was the most expensive purchase that a Chinese company made in America. Even though the HQ of the company remains in Smithfield, Virginia, the executive decisions are made in Luohe, Henan.

Smithfield

Smithfield

Holiday Inn

Nearly 70 years ago, Holiday Inn had been nothing more than a single motel in between Memphis and Nashville. After a bad experience while taking a road trip with his family, Kemmons Wilson came up with a great idea. A year after he put things into motion, he had already partnered with Wallace E. Johnson to construct more locations! In the late ‘80s, an English company known as the Intercontinental Hotels Group bought the hotel chain. Even to this day, new locations continue to pop up across the nation and all over the world! It is still under the ownership of IGH, which must mean it was a great investment.

Holiday Inn

Holiday Inn

Motorola

Best known for its tech products, Motorola started in Schaumburg, Illinois a long time before we were even introduced to the concept of mobile phones. After it was launched in 1928, it saw steady growth until it reached the peak of its success with flip phones and the like. Google eventually bought it, only to sell it to a Chinese company called Lenovo in 2014. This did not prove to be a profitable move for Google since it bought the company for $12.billion two years before it sold it for $2.9 billion. Even today, people are still puzzled why Google seemed to be comfortable losing $10 billion with this deal.

Motorola

Motorola

Burger King

A lot of people think of the United States when they think of fast food. There are a lot of homegrown chains out there, and Burger King is one of them. David Egerton and James McLamore opened the first store under the name “Insta Burger King” in Miami in 1954. They had no idea that it was going to turn into an international brand. They sold the company for the first time a decade after that. It has since gone through a number of different owners. At the moment, it is owned by a Canadian company called Restaurant Brands International. BK still gets financial backing from 3G Capital from New York City.

Burger King

Burger King

Lucky Strike

It feels like Lucky Strike, also known as Luckies, is the most popular American cigarette brand out there. In the ‘30s and ‘40s, people smoked the product because it had such a strong marketing plan. This was the reason the brand became the best-selling cigarette brand back then. In 1976, the company started its business relationship with a company called British American Tobacco. In 1994, the UK company purchased the American Tobacco Company and its subsidiaries, Lucky Strike and Pall Mall. Even though it has gone through a number of changes, it is still considered to be a quintessentially American brand. This can be attributed to its presence in pop culture. The brand was heavily featured in Mad Men!

Lucky Strike

Lucky Strike

Budweiser

In terms of beers, there are folks who assume that it does not get any more American than this. It might have been true in the past, but the truth is that this is no longer an American company even though it was founded in Missouri and continues to say “America” on the container. In 2008, this company was bought by a Belgium beer powerhouse called InBev for $52 billion. It might have an American past, but we can’t exactly say the same thing about its future. At any rate, we are just glad that the parent company did not change the formula. It tastes exactly the same as it used to!

Budweiser

Budweiser

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