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Largest American retailers and largest US retail chains globally



The most recognized and largest American retailers always appear on the World’s Largest Retail Chains’ annual list.

However, for 2015, this particular list has shortened, even though the US is still quite dominant. Twelve retail chains have not made it onto the list and there are only four additions, making the 2015 list less US dominant.

The leaders in the US retail industry remain Target, Home Depot, Kroger, Costco and Walmart. In total, the retailers indicating the biggest annual revenue globally include 76 American retailers, within a total of 250 retail chains. This implies that 30% of the worldwide retail chains on this year’s list are in the US. This is a decline of 33%, compared to 2014.

These figures are garnered from the 2015 Global Powers of Retailing report, which is an annual report drafted by STORES Magazine and Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu. It includes military retail organizations, managed by the US government, as well as privately-owned US retailers, which makes it very different to the 2015 Fortune 500 list. Another factor is that this report is actually based on 2013 income figures, which makes it less important to those with interest in the US retail industry, rather than the Retail Fortune 500 rankings.

However, the Global Powers report offers readers a worldwide ranking number, providing a perspective which compares worldwide retailing trends. The rankings generally show very little change, but this year has seen large shifts.

People who follow the US retail industry closely will not be surprised by the placements on the list. However, the report provides an easy reference to the changes taking place in the US retail industry, compared to the changes in other countries.

2014 vs. 2015

Costco is stated in second position on the list of largest retailer globally. Walmart, in first position, still surpasses Costco’s revenue, but this position of the top two being US retailers is significant from a historical perspective.

Albertson’s shot from number 240 in 2014, to number 43 in 2015. It acquired 870 stores, which was responsible for its growth of 489.7%.

Those who did not make it onto the list of largest US retail chains are some of the largest US convenience store chains, such as RaceTrac, QuikTrip, Wawa, Casey’s General, the Pantry and Sheetz. The reason for this was not due to a decline in revenue, but that those who draft the Global Powers list made the decision not to include retailers that obtain most of their retail revenue from fuel on the 2015 list. This is a reversal of the methods used for 2014.

Dell and Radio Shack were not listed at all and this merely reflects the problem they are experiencing with a declining customer base and retail relevance.

List of top US retailers

The number next to the company name is the worldwide ranking number which has been given to the company, compared with the 250 biggest global retail chains and companies.

  • 1. Walmart

  • 2. Costco

  • 6. The Kroger Company

  • 9. Home Depot

  • 10. Target

  • 11. Walgreens

  • 12. CVS Caremark

  • 15. Amazon.com

  • 20. Lowe’s

  • 25. Best Buy

  • 29. Sears Holdings

  • 30. Safeway

  • 34. Macy’s

  • 35. Publix

  • 36. TJX

  • 37. Rite Aid

  • 45. H.E. Butt Grocery Company

  • 46. Apple Retail

  • 51. Kohl’s

  • 56. Dollar General

  • 61. The Gap

  • 64. Meijer

  • 73. Whole Foods Market

  • 76. Staples

  • 77. Toys ‘R Us

  • 80. Nordstrom

  • 82. JCPenney

  • 83. BJ’s Wholesale Club

  • 90. Bed Bath and Beyond

  • 93. L Brands (Limited Brands)

  • 96. Family Dollar

  • 99. Liberty Interactive Corporation (QVC)

  • 100. Ross Stores

  • 240. Albertson’s

Largest American retailers regarding retail sales revenues

  • 102. Southeaster Grocers

  • 106. Giant Eagle

  • 118. SuperValu

  • 126. Army and Air Force Exchange Service

  • 130. Hy-Vee

  • 133. Dollar Tree

  • 139. Wegmans Food Markets

  • 140. PetSmart

  • 145. O’Reilly Automotive

  • 146. Dillard’s

  • 147. Foot Locker

  • 154. Advance Auto Parts

  • 158. Office Depot

  • 159. Sherwin-Williams

  • 160. Defense Commissary Agency

  • 161. The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company

  • 165. WinCo Foods

  • 170. Nike Inc.

  • 171. Big Lots

  • 175. Tractor Supply Company

  • 190. Ascena Retail Group

  • 191. Harris Teeter (Ruddick Co.)

  • 193. Neiman Marcus

  • 194. Michaels Stores Inc.

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