Accelerated Organic Growth, Acquisitions Fuel Fastest 50
Retailers made the most of a fragile and uneven economic recovery in 2010. Despite the uncertainty, expansion plans accelerated and acquisitions heated up. Both growth strategies yielded results, particularly for the 50 fastest-growing retailers. In 2010, composite retail sales for the group rose 14.6 percent, more than double the growth rate for the Fastest 50 in 2009. From 2005 through 2010, sales increased at a compound annual rate of 20.6 percent. These retailers also stand out for their bottom-line performance: the composite net profit margin of 6.7 percent beat the Top 250 by nearly three percentage points.
Of the seven retailers that joined the ranks of the Fastest 50 in 2010, five were also new to the Top 250: Jumbo Supermarkten (primarily on the basis of an acquisition); Agrokor, Croatia’s leading retailer (acquisition); SUNDRUG (acquisition) and TSURUHA (acquisition), both Japanese drug store retailers; and Nitori Holdings, a Japanese home furnishings retailer (organic growth). The other two are Swiss luxury goods company Richemont (organic growth and acquisition), and RaceTrac Petroleum, a U.S. operator of convenience stores (organic growth).
Not surprisingly, retailers from fast-growing emerging markets are well represented, accounting for 19 of the Fastest 50. Included are five Chinese companies, four from South America, three each from South Africa and Mexico, two from Turkey and one each from Russia and Croatia.