Top 10 global retailers show modest growth in 2014

Press release

Top 10 global retailers show modest growth in 2014

New York – 25 September 2014 –Revenues for the world’s top 10 largest retailers reached $1.3 trillion in the last fiscal year (encompassing companies’ fiscal years ended through June 2014). This is a 2.9 percent change from the prior year indicating modest growth. The retailers have been ranked according to their fiscal 2013 net retail revenue in U.S. dollars. The average size of the top 10 retailers exceeded $129 billion according to the Global Powers of Retailing report from Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL), in conjunction with STORES Media.

Half of top 10 retailers are U.S.-based companies.

U.S.-based Walmart remained the world's largest retailer, with retail revenue totaling 4.5 times that of its nearest competitor. Costco moved into second place in 2013 from third in 2012, continuing its ascent up the ranking. Carrefour, Schwarz Group, Tesco and Kroger - ranked in marginal descending order - all achieved 2013 retail revenues of $98+ billion. In 2013, Carrefour assumed third place, barely edging out Schwarz Group, which moved up two spots into fourth place. Tesco dropped from second place in 2012 to fifth in 2013 as a result of both declining sales and a weaker British pound against the U.S. dollar. Sixth-ranked Kroger may overtake all three of these companies in the future as a result of its January 2014 acquisition of Harris Teeter Supermarkets, which had revenues of $4.7 billion in fiscal year 2013.

“Retail revenue growth in 2013 was modest. This was due to a number of contributory factors such as weakness in the global economy and rising market share for internet retailers,” said Dr. Ira Kalish, DTTL Chief Global Economist. “As for the global economy, 2013 saw a tightening of fiscal policy in the US, which included tax increases. In Europe, the fallout from the Eurozone debt crisis continued with governments implementing austerity measures, unemployment staying high, and credit conditions remaining restrictive. And in the UK, real wages continued to decline,” said Kalish.

Further down the top 10 table, Metro maintained its ranking as the world's seventh largest retailer. Aldi overtook Home Depot on the back of a stronger euro compared with 2012. Tenth-ranked Target retained its position among the Top 10.

Optimal retailer size appears to be $100bn range?

“The global retail industry is going through an interesting period of change; particularly as technological innovation continues to take pace,” says Vicky Eng, DTTL Global Sector Leader, Retail. “For the first time, in the top 10 ranking we are seeing a large number of grocery businesses that are clustered just under the $100 bn range,” said Eng. “The breakaway leader of this pack will be the one with the retail beyond foresight to embrace exponential innovation. Increasingly that will be the key to future success in retail.”

Top 10 global retailers

Top 10 retailers worldwide, 2013      
Top 250 rank Name of company Country of origin 2013 Retail revenue (US $mil)
1 Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. U.S. 476,294
2 Costco Wholesale Corporation U.S. 105,156
3 Carrefour S.A. France 98,688
4 Schwarz Unternehmens Treuhand KG Germany 98,662
5 Tesco PLC U.K. 98,631
6 The Kroger Co. U.S. 98,375
7 Metro Ag* Germany 86,393
8 Aldi Einkauf GmbH & Co. oHG Germany 81,090
9 The Home Depot, Inc. U.S. 78,812
10 Target Corporation U.S. 72,596

*Metro changed its fiscal year from end of December to end of September. Fiscal 2013 results reported here include the 9 months ended 30 September 2013 plus the quarter ended 31 December 2013 to create a 12-month period equivalent to prior years.

Changes in the overall ranking from year-to-year are generally driven by increases or decreases in companies' sales. However, a stronger currency vis-à-vis the dollar in 2013 means that companies reporting in that currency may rank higher in 2013 than they did in 2012, all other things being equal. Conversely, companies reporting in a weaker currency may rank lower. In 2013, the euro strengthened against the dollar while the British pound was slightly weaker.

Notes to editors:

The top 10 global retailers ranking is a pre-release of DTTL’s annual Global Powers of Retail report that outlines the full 250 global retailers. This report will be released in early January 2015.

Press contact
Marielle Legair
Global Communications
Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited
Tel: + 1 (516) 918-7170 

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