Costco is one of the world's largest wholesale clubs, selling bulk goods at low prices to paid members, who pay an annual subscription of $60. It stocks a vast range of products from fresh food to furniture, and from apparel to appliances, mostly third-party brands, but also many under its own Kirkland Signature banner. Foods overall account for around 40% of sales. Its main US rivals are Walmart's Sam's Club, founded at around the same time in the 1980s, and BJ's Wholesale Club. In fact, Costco is the biggest of the three by revenues (though not outlets), partly as a result of a 1993 merger with another US rival Price Club, which had itself been targeted previously by Walmart. By mid 2020, Costco had 58.1m paid households under membership worldwide and 105.5m individual cardholders. It operated 552 warehouses in the US, another 101 in Canada, and 140 internationally in Mexico, the UK (where there are 29 warehouses) and selected other European and the Asian territories. Revenues for the year to Aug 2020 were a best-ever $166.8bn, with net income of $4.0bn. However marketing expenditure is minimal. Craig Jelinek is CEO. In 2020, the company paid just under $1bn to acquire Innovel Solutions, the national US distribution and installation division previously owned by Sears.
Who are the competitors of Costco? see Retail Sector index
Capsule checked 8th October 2020
Adbrands Daily Update 18th Mar 2020: One has to wonder why on earth Ed Lampert hasn't already just walked away from the slow motion carcrash that is Sears/Kmart. Instead, he keeps selling off whatever few assets remain to keep funding what must surely by now be a hopeless case in anyone's eyes. The latest disposal is the sale to Costco for $1bn in cash of Innovel Solutions, the distribution, delivery and installation firm that has remained until now a subsidiary of Lampert's new Transform HoldCo entity. Innovel operates 11 distribution centres and more than 100 delivery depots nationally.
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