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One-Fifth of All Companies in the World Operate in the Retail and Trade Business; Entire Industry to Hit $29.4T Value by 2025

Jastra Kranjec
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The COVID-19 has had a huge impact on the global retail industry, with thousands of stores, supermarkets, and shopping malls closed amid the lockdowns. Some retailers may have coped with this new situation better than others, but it has undoubtedly caused a financial shock across the sector. Nevertheless, the retail market still counts the largest number of companies globally.

According to data presented by Stock Apps, one-fifth of all companies globally operate in the retail and trade business, more than double that in any other sector.

Over 60 Million Retail Companies Globally, more than in Construction, Electronics and Finance Sectors Combined

2020 was probably one of the most challenging years for the companies working in the retail sector. With shops closed and social distancing rules in place, consumers across the globe were forced to change their purchase priorities drastically.

Many of them cut down their shopping budgets, while some even decided not to go to stores at all. However, the most significant change was the global shift towards e-Commerce, as millions of people decided to ditch their shopping carts for online orders and take advantage of cashless payments and digital accounts. Although retail companies had major challenges to deal with, their total number remained huge.

According to Statista data, a total of 213.6 million companies were operating worldwide last year, 560,000 less than in 2019. Retail and trade companies accounted for 28.2% of that number, with more than 60 million of them doing business in 2020.

Construction ranked as the second-largest sector, with 25.1 million companies globally, or around 12% of the total number.

Metals and electronics, finance and insurance, and consumer goods followed, with 18.3 million, 16.1 million, and 13.5 million companies, respectively. Also, statistics revealed that the retail sector had more registered companies than the construction, electronics, and finance industry combined.

Global Retail Industry to Hit $29.4T Value by 2025

The pandemic-fuelled rush towards digitalization and a global shift to eCommerce and webshops enabled many retailers to do business on a global scale. However, most revenues still come from the ten largest players, led by Amazon, Alibaba, and Walmart.

According to Research and Markets data, the global retail market hit $20.3trn value in 2020, growing by a CARG of 2.4% since 2015. Most of the revenues, or nearly 20%, came from the motor vehicle and parts dealers’ segment. However, eCommerce is expected to see the fastest growth, rising by a CAGR of 13.8% by 2025.

Analyzed by geography, Asia-Pacific was the largest region in the global retail market, accounting for 34.7% of the total in 2020, and followed by North America and Western Europe. Still, statistics show South America and the Middle East are expected to be the fastest-growing regions in the next four years, growing by CAGRs of 12.4% and 10.4%, respectively.

By 2025, the global retail industry is forecast to continue growing by CARG of 7.7% and hit $29.4trn value.

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