Updated June 09, 2013Employing over three million people, the UK retail industry is the UK’s largest service industry – one that is predicted to increase in size by 15% over the next five years. While this projection represents a slowdown, compared to past years, it is still impressive figure, especially considering recent economic hardships in the UK.
Eight percent of the UK’s GDP is generated by the UK retail industry, which includes growing success of UK retailers overseas, and expansion of e-commerce which reaches far beyond UK borders.
Hypermarkets like Tesco and Asda are able to capture a wide customer base because of their diversified offerings. The Co-operative Food, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s, along with Tesco and Asda, account for a market share of over 80% of retail food sales in the UK, according to TNS Market Research consultants in the UK.
When it comes to retail spending, London is a particularly strong shopping market. London beat out Tokyo, New York and Paris in gross retail sales for 2010 – spending there totaled around £64.2 billion, compared to Tokyo's £61.4 billion, New York's £47 billion, and Paris's £46.6 billion.
The recessionary hits that individual retail chains in the United Kingdom took may have seemed disastrous, but from a larger perspective, within the United Kingdom there were not many substantial changes in the largest UK retail chains. There were no changes in the ranking order of the largest U.K. retailers when compared to other retailers in the U.K. which means the largest U.K. retail chains held their own with their own homeland competition
The best news from inside the United Kingdom retail industry was that there were only two substantial changes with UK retailers on the latest list of World's Largest Retail Chains. In the global retailing arena, the two biggest changes were with apparel retailer Arcadia Group, and department store Debenhams, which both lost their spots on the world's largest retailing list completely. The creators of the Global Powers of Retailing list blame the dramatic decline of these two retail chains on the weakened British pound. But since the sixteen UK retailers that retained their rankings on the list lost little or no ground in the global rankings, the relative strength of the British pound seems like a flimsy excuse.
Two U.K. retail chains gained some significantly positive ground in the 2011 global retail rankings. Supermarket chain Co-operative Group Ltd. had a significant positive change, rising 17 spots on the ranking list of world's largest retailers. Specialty retailer HMV Group rose 9 spots on the ranking list.
What follows is a complete list of the UK retail chains considered to be among the largest retailers in the world, according to annual revenue. The number in the left column is the global ranking number assigned to the company, based on its sales figures, compared to other top retail organizations worldwide.
> Complete List of 2011 UK Largest Retailers >>
More World's Largest Retailers:
- Largest North American Retail Companies
- Europe's Largest Retail Companies by Country
- Complete list of 2011 World's Largest Retailers
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