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14. Ashland
14. Ashland
Fortune 500 rank: 280
2009 revenue: $8.1 billion
2009 total shareholder return: 283.5%

With its acquisition of Hercules, Ashland made substantial progress in transforming itself into a more-focused specialty chemical maker.

The company has also hinted that it will divest its Valvoline and distribution segments, as they are a poor fit. Doing so could unlock value for shareholders.

NEXT: 15. Huntsman

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Last updated April 15 2010: 7:07 AM ET
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