The top 250 global retailers generated aggregated revenues of US$ 4.5 trillion in 2014, up 4.3% on 2013, according to Deloitte. US retailer Wal-mart with sales of US$ 486 billion was the global leader by a wide margin. Tesco PLC from the UK and France’s Carrefour each generated a bit under US$ 100 billion ranking 5th and 6th respectively.
Switzerland’s Migros, with retail sales of US$ 25.6 billion dropped two positions to number 40 while Coop with revenue of US$ 24.7 billion climbed 7 positions to number 43.
“Slower economic growth in several markets, lower inflation, falling oil prices, and a stronger US dollar were among dynamics which generated mixed fortunes for retailers across different regions,” explains Howard da Silva, Consumer Business Industry Leader at Deloitte in Switzerland. “The Chinese economy has considerably slowed down, mainly due to weak exports and weakening investment. Nevertheless, overall consumer spending held up fairly well, although the luxury sector faltered. And the latter had a significant impact on Swiss watchmakers.”
European retailers saw revenue growth fall to a five-year low as 30% of the region’s top 250 retailers experienced negative sales growth and another third saw their growth rate decline but remain positive. The composite 2.1% year-over-year growth rate was the slowest since 2009 and the lowest of the world’s five geographic regions. As competition remained fierce both offline and online, many European retailers continued to downsize – closing stores, retreating from difficult foreign markets and building smaller-footprint stores.
Karine Szegedi, Consumer Business Industry Partner at Deloitte in Switzerland, said “The appreciation of the Swiss franc in January 2015 put Swiss retailers under pressure.”