Wal-Mart, Toys R Us; Top Retailers and When They Began

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In my last posting, I reflected on the durability of large retailers.  In this posting I wanted to look at in what years our current retail community was founded and what we might be able to learn from it.

              Year of founding                                                Retailer

  • 1901 (113 years old)                                      Walgreens
  • 1902 (112 years old)                                      JC Penney
  • 1905 (109 years old)                                      H.E.B.
  • 1921 (93 years old)                                         Radio Shack
  • 1922 (92 years old)                                         CVS
  • 1924 (90 years old)                                         Burlington Coat Factory
  • 1925 (89 years old)                                         Winn Dixie
  • 1930 (84 years old)                                         Publix and Hy Vee
  • 1934 (80 years old)                                         Meijer
  • 1939 (75 years old)                                         Dollar General
  • 1947 (67 years old)                                         Fred’s
  • 1950 (64 years old)                                         Wal-Mart
  • 1956 (58 years old)                                         TJX

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  • 1957 (57 years old)                                         Toys “R” Us and Ross Stores
  • 1959 (55 years old)                                         Family Dollar
  • 1962 (52 years old)                                         Target, KMart and Kohls
  • 1966 (48 years old)                                         Best Buy
  • 1967 (47 years old)                                         Big Lots
  • 1968 (46 years old)                                         Rite-Aid
  • 1971 (43 years old)                                         Bed, Bath & Beyond
  • 1983 (31 years old)                                         Costco
  • 1984 (30 years old)                                         Michaels, BJ’s and GameStop
  • 1986 (28 years old)                                         Dollar Tree
  • 1994 (20 years old)                                         Amazon

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When you look at the dates, you see that the period of 1950 through 1962 defined the current world of retailing.  1962 was certainly a blue ribbon year with the birth of Target, Kmart and Kohls. In addition, that period saw the launch of Toys “R” Us and Wal-Mart.

 So, what do we make of all of this?  That the world we live in was born a long time ago; that we are in some ways tied to the past and that our ability to adjust to the present and future may well say a great deal about not just how these retailers fare but how we all do.

Whatever the lesson, it is interesting to think of what retailers being founded today will be the powerhouses 50 years in the future and thereby shape the lives of people and companies.  Some of us will be around to see it.  When you do, you may want to remember this moment in time.

 

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