conglomerate

adjective
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \kən-ˈgläm-rət, -ˈglä-mə-\

Definition of conglomerate 

(Entry 1 of 3)

: made up of parts from various sources or of various kinds the conglomerate peoples of New England a conglomerate empire

conglomerate

verb
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \kən-ˈglä-mə-ˌrāt \
conglomerated; conglomerating

Definition of conglomerate (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to gather into a mass or coherent whole Infinite numbers of dull people conglomerated round her …— Virginia Woolf

conglomerate

noun
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \kən-ˈgläm-rət, -ˈglä-mə-\

Definition of conglomerate (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a composite mass or mixture especially : rock composed of rounded fragments varying from small pebbles to large boulders in a cement (as of hardened clay)

2 : a widely diversified corporation an international conglomerate of some 350 businesses

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Other Words from conglomerate

Verb

conglomerative \kən-​ˈgläm-​rə-​tiv, -​ˈglä-​mə-​; -​mə-​ˌrā-​ \ adjective
conglomerator \kən-​ˈglä-​mə-​ˌrā-​tər \ noun

Noun

conglomeratic \kən-​ˌglä-​mə-​ˈra-​tik, ˌkän-​ \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for conglomerate

Synonyms: Verb

assemble, cluster, collect, concenter, concentrate, congregate, convene, converge, forgather (or foregather), gather, meet, rendezvous

Synonyms: Noun

empire

Antonyms: Verb

break up, disband, disperse, split (up)

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Examples of conglomerate in a Sentence

Verb

people conglomerated in the downtown streets for an impromptu victory celebration over the years the town's discarded junk conglomerated at the bottom of the river

Noun

a news and entertainment conglomerate Our small company must compete with the big conglomerates.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

In a shareholder vote over competing slates of directors, Elliott narrowly edged out French media conglomerate Vivendi . Eric Sylvers, WSJ, "Elliott Scores a Victory in Telecom Italia Fight," 4 May 2018 Telecom Italia, whose biggest shareholder is French media conglomerate Vivendi SA, is planning to set aside about 700 million euros ($834 million) to pay for the early retirements and voluntary buyouts, one of the people said. Bloomberg.com, "Bloomberg," 9 Jan. 2018 Elliott has set up a showdown with Telecom Italia’s largest shareholder, the French media conglomerate Vivendi SA, which owns 24 percent. Daniele Lepido, Bloomberg.com, "Elliott Said to Back Ferrari-Like Spinoff for Telecom Italia," 21 Mar. 2018 French media conglomerate Vivendi SA, Telecom Italia’s largest shareholder with a 24 percent stake, increased its influence over the Italian phone company last year. Bloomberg.com, "Bloomberg," 8 Jan. 2018 Erik Hellum has also been appointed as COO of the radio and media conglomerate’s local media. Billboard, "Executive Turntable: Hires at Def Jam, Plus Moves at Warner Music Group, Townsquare & More," 21 Oct. 2017 For the better part of the past two years, the company has had to deal with a looming takeover threat from French media conglomerate Vivendi, which has slowly been buying shares of the game publisher. Chris Morris, Fortune, "Ubisoft’s CEO Isn’t Playing Games," 23 Aug. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The bride’s father is the vice president of investor relations and the treasurer of Textron, a global aerospace and defense technologies conglomerate in Providence, R.I. New York Times, "Emily Salander, Felipe Maciá," 8 July 2018 For SoftBank, a deal would help the Japanese conglomerate put more money to work from its Vision Fund, which is backed largely by Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi sovereign-wealth funds, as well as money from SoftBank. Eliot Brown, WSJ, "WeWork in Talks With SoftBank to Double Valuation to as Much as $40 Billion," 13 June 2018 Some media had reported that Singapore Air (singy, -2.66%), Qatar Airways and conglomerate Tata Group were potential bidders, but in the end none showed up. Fortune, "A Funny Thing Happened When India Put Its National Airline Up for Sale: No One Put in a Bid," 1 June 2018 The company has reached a tentative deal to sell its Nine West and Bandolino footwear and handbag business to conglomerate Authentic Brands Group, which controls the brands of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Muhammad Ali and others. Nathan Bomey, USA TODAY, "Nine West files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection," 6 Apr. 2018 Now SoftBank, a Japanese conglomerate best known in the United States for its ownership of Sprint, is looking to muscle in on this lucrative business. Landon Thomas Jr., New York Times, "SoftBank Looks to Invade Wall Street’s Turf," 11 Mar. 2018 There are just three major makers of DRAM: Korea conglomerates Samsung and SK Hynix, and Micron, a stand-alone company and the smallest of the three. David Staats, idahostatesman, "Prosecutors say Micron workers in Taiwan stole tech secrets | Idaho Statesman," 8 Dec. 2017 Within that arena, Remy hopes to position Atlas brands as a bastion of independence within an ever-conglomerating industry. Esther Mobley, San Francisco Chronicle, "Atlas Wine Co. wants to revolutionize grocery store wine," 3 Nov. 2017 Immediate recognition is the reason conglomerates overwhelmingly choose pre-existing fashion labels as vehicles for young talent instead of backing new ventures. Alexander Fury, New York Times, "In Fashion, the Beauty (and Challenge) of Looking Back," 18 Sep. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

These are tiny conglomerates of electrons that are spread throughout the main bunch. Chris Lee, Ars Technica, "Single-beam laser becomes multi-beam laser by kicking electrons," 5 Dec. 2018 Michael Kors Holdings acquired Jimmy Choo last year, setting itself apart from other fashion conglomerates that tend to grow in scale and revenue strictly via licenses, diffusion lines, and the acquisition of more mass-market labels. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Versace Is Not Becoming Michael Kors—the Same Way Jimmy Choo Didn't Become Michael Kors," 26 Sep. 2018 Among the others, keep an eye on Yunnan, where French conglomerate LVMH has invested heavily in a high-end, high-altitude vineyard near Shangri-La at the Himalayan foothills (pictured). Mark Ellwood, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why China Should Be Your Next Wine Destination," 11 Sep. 2018 Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google were dwarfing their old-media conglomerates. Sarah Ellison, Philly.com, "Rupert Murdoch: The media mogul says goodbye to much of the company he built," 2 July 2018 Buffett has never provided profit forecasts and doesn’t even have an investor relations department at his Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate. BostonGlobe.com, "Life sciences bill sent to the governor," 8 June 2018 Brian Cox is the marquee name as Logan Roy, an aging Master of the Universe who renegs on a deal to pass his entertainment conglomerate to his children. Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle, "HBO’s ‘Succession’ is a cruel catharsis, and perfect for our swampy time," 1 June 2018 In a letter to shareholders in February, Buffett explained how his conglomerate, Berkshire Hathaway, got into the real estate business by default in 2000 when Berkshire bought the energy company MidAmerican, which owned HomeServices. Sarah Gray, Fortune, "Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Becomes Second Largest U.S. Real-Estate Broker," 3 May 2018 Timberland is a properly iconic American footwear brand that since 2011 has been part of an outdoor-leaning brand conglomerate, VF Corporation, which also includes Eastpak, Vans, Lee, and The North Face. Luke Leitch, Vogue, "Timberland’s First-Ever Creative Director, Christopher Raeburn, Talks," 25 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conglomerate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of conglomerate

Adjective

1572, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1642, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

1818, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for conglomerate

Adjective

Latin conglomeratus, past participle of conglomerare to roll together, from com- + glomerare to wind into a ball, from glomer-, glomus ball — more at clam

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Time Traveler for conglomerate

The first known use of conglomerate was in 1572

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More Definitions for conglomerate

conglomerate

noun

Financial Definition of conglomerate

What It Is

A conglomerate is a corporation made up of several smaller, independently-run companies which may operate across several sectors and industries.

How It Works

Conglomerates are generally formed for two reasons: to diversify risk by participating in unrelated businesses or to expand a business within an industry to include suppliers and product purchasers.

Despite the possible benefits, conglomerates face the challenge of becoming so large that they are difficult to manage efficiently. This can lead to a lack of focus, which exacerbates managerial problems and reduces shareholder returns. This reason is why conglomerates often "spin off" subsidiaries into stand-alone entities. Corporations may also fail to realize the anticipated cost savings associated with acquisitions.

Why It Matters

The motto "the parts are worth more than the whole" is the idea behind conglomerates. They are typically very diversified businesses (although some conglomerates stick to one or two industries). This diversification and the efficiencies brought about by shared or reduced costs often make conglomerates less risky than those operating in a single market or niche. Many well-run conglomerates like Berkshire Hathaway and General Electric are much like funds in that they offer diversification and are less sensitive to general business cycles than more focused companies.

Source: Investing Answers

conglomerate

noun

English Language Learners Definition of conglomerate

: a large business that is made of different kinds of companies

: a kind of rock that is made from many stones of different sizes held together with hardened clay

conglomerate

noun
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \kən-ˈglä-mə-rət \

Kids Definition of conglomerate

1 : a mass (as a rock) formed of fragments from various sources

2 : a corporation engaging in many different kinds of business

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conglomerate

adjective
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \kən-ˈgläm-(ə-)rət \

Medical Definition of conglomerate 

(Entry 1 of 3)

: made up of parts from various sources or of various kinds

conglomerate

verb
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \-ə-ˌrāt \
conglomerated; conglomerating

Medical Definition of conglomerate (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to gather (something) into a mass or coherent whole

intransitive verb

: to gather into a mass or coherent whole

Other Words from conglomerate

conglomerative \-​ˈgläm-​(ə-​)rət-​iv, -​ə-​ˌrāt-​ \ adjective

conglomerate

noun
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \-(ə-)rət \

Medical Definition of conglomerate (Entry 3 of 3)

: a composite mass or mixture

conglomerate

noun
con·​glom·​er·​ate | \kən-ˈglä-mə-rət \

Legal Definition of conglomerate 

: a widely diversified company especially : a corporation that acquires other companies whose activities are unrelated to the corporation's primary activity

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