The imagination and creativity that goes into architecture is an entire art form in itself. Architects work tirelessly to pour in their feel, aesthetic, and personal brand into everything that they are hired to create. What’s more is many architects also leak their work into interior design as well. Once you have created the perfect exterior masterpiece, why stop there? Architects have been known to create furniture, art pieces, and grand décor for the interiors of their projects to give their buildings a more well-rounded flow. Architects help pave the way for new designs, innovations, and ideas. They help lead trends, create timeless works of art, and create incredible environments for us to work, live, or play in.
There are many architects and architecture firms around the world who are highly sought after and renowned for what they do. Whether it’s a grand entry way with tall ceilings, a skyscraper office building, or an incredible mansion, architects pour their brand of creativity into each project to bring their ideas, and the ideas of the clients, to life. While there are many firms who may be specialized in a specific aesthetic or architecture style such as classicism or modern-mid century, there are many firms who are leading the game across the board as some of the best architecture firms in the world. Based off revenue made and amount of employees in 2019, these are the top architect firms in the world today.
4) Perkins & Will
Perkins & Will architect firm was first founded by Lawrence Perkins and Philip Will in 1935 when the pair met at Cornell University while studying architecture. The company first gained national attention after completion of the Crow Island School project in Winnetka, Illinois in 1940, and has been on the upswing ever since. The firm prides themselves on sleek, minimal, modern designs with sustainability leading the way in everything they do. Their buildings not only emcompass a completely modern approach to design, but they work to create sustainable buildings that have minimal impact on our environment. In fact, the firm claims to have the most Leadership in Energy and Envioronmental Design (LEED) accredited professionals on their team than any other architecture and design firm in North America (1).
Perkins & Will have successfully adapted to the changes the world has experienced over the last few decades and continues to take their innovation and creativity into community-driven projects. With 1,140 architects, Perkins & Will has taken on projects like Center for Coastal and Deltaic Solutions in Louisiana, and University of Washington Life Sciences Building. With staple projects and a long-standing history in architecture, Perkins & Will has earned multiple awards from Builidng Team Awards, GRAY Magazine, and AIA. Last year, the firm brought in an impressive revenue of $350 million dollars.
Aecom is an extremely interesting and innovative architect firm that prides themselves on developing and implementing unique designs to meet the complex challenges the world is facing today. Aecom specializes in complex structures, precise designs, and unique infrastructures that are both futuristic and also timeless. Head quartered in Los Angeles, California, this American architecture firm has completed thousands of major projects around the world including designing the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Hyhpoerloop, and the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Completing such world-renowned projects comes with high rewards. The Aecom architecture firm has been ranked as the number one Transportation and General Building in Engineering New Record’s 2019 “Top 500 Design Firms”. They also have been awarded Fortune magazine’s “World’s Most Admired Companies” for five years in a row now. With 1,491 employees in 7 different continents, Aecom brings in a yearly revenue of $329 million per year making them the third largest architecture firm in the world today.
2) Nikken Sekkei
Headquartered in Chiyoda, Tokyo, Nikken Sekkei is a Japanese architect firm that specializes in architecture, engineering and planning. Nikken Sekkei has earned themselves quite the portfolio with an astonishing 25,000 completed projects spread out in over 50 countries. Their long standing experience in the world of architecture has created an impressive reputation for the firm with over 120 years of experience in architecture and design. Nikken Sekkei is famous for their incredible modern design with Japanese influences in their work. Their work is sleek, contemporary, and cutting edge with flavors of Japan running through the design.
Nikken Sekkei has completed award winning projects such as the Futur Camp Nou, Guangzhou Library, and the Shibuya Hikarie, all of which are excellent examples of the firms modern design with Japanese style seen in the architecture. Nikken Sekkei currently employs 1796 architects, each with a focus on either design, engineering, science, or planning. As of 2019, the company brought in a whopping revenue of $550 million dollars, making them the second largest and most sought after architect firm in the world.
Number one on the list by a landslide is Gensler (2). Founded in 1965 by Art Gensler and his wife Drue Gensler in San Francisco, California, this West Coast based architect firm is the monopoly in the world of architecture and design. Split up and organized into 16 diverse areas all specialized in a sector of the industry, Gensler has 2570 architects under its name each covering a unique spectrum of architecture.
This California based architecture firm is known specifically for its modern design and sustainability in each of its projects. Gensler is known for cutting edge, sleek, almost futuristic designs with minimal colors, cool tones, and sharp lines. On top of that, each building works to create low to zero emissions to help sustain a healthy planet and environment. Being such a forward-thinking powerhouse, Gensler has earned quite the collection of awards including being named by Forbes as the number six most admired company in the world. They have also design award winning projects such as the Shanghai Tower in China and the Incheon International Airport in South Korea.
Operating in 48 cities in 16 different countries, taking on over 10,000 unique projects in more than 2,500 cities around the world, Gensler keeps themselves quite busy with the biggest and most inspired projects. Because of their reputation and incredible architecture designs, the Gensler architecture firm earns a solid revenue of over $1.4 billion dollars per year making them the highest paid architecture firm in the world.