It’s California’s second richest company, but you probably haven’t heard of it

What’s the second richest company in California? If you can’t answer that question, you aren’t the only one. The answer? McKesson Corporation.

According to Fortune, McKesson is “a massive corporation hiding in plain sight.” A distributor of pharmaceuticals and other medical supplies, McKesson is often overlooked in an area of the country that is known for its tech sector, which is both flashier and more likely to appear in breaking news. A low-margin, low risk business, McKesson doesn’t bring in the same profit margin as companies like Apple (the state’s #1 richest company), but it has a level of longevity and stability that is far and above any tech company.

Started in 1833, McKesson will celebrate its 185th birthday this year. What began as an importer and wholesaler of botanical drugs in Manhattan has since morphed into the distribution giant of today. The company became incorporated in California in 1967 when it merged with Foremost. In the 1980s, the company shifted its focus to healthcare, a move that has skyrocketed its annual revenues from $20 billion to $200 billion in just two decades – making it the 5th largest company nationwide.

As Joe Matthews writes, McKesson is “noteworthy among our richest companies for sins it has not committed.”

“There’s something to be said for a California-based business so predictably corporate in this, our era of disruption,” he continues.

Read Matthews’s full writeup of McKesson in The Sacramento Bee.