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9. Merck
9. Merck
2010 Fortune 500 rank: 85
2009 profit growth: 65.2%
2009 revenue growth: 15.0%

CEO since 2005: Richard T. Clark

Bolstered by the $41 billion acquisition of Schering Plough and strong sales of Singulair (to treat allergies and asthma) and its hypertension and diabetes drugs, Merck posted a healthy increase in both revenues (up 15%, to $27.4 billion) and earnings (up 65%, to $12.9 billion) in 2009.

This year, Merck CEO Richard Clark has a bitter pill to swallow: patents on two hypertension drugs and a brain tumor treatment - which together bring in about $3 billion annually - are set to expire.

NEXT: 10. O'Reilly Automotive

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Last updated April 28 2010: 12:37 PM ET
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