Canada’s Top 100 Retailers

The CSCA Retail 100 shares the top Canadian retailers by sales, and the 2018/2019 results were recently released.

Created by the Centre for the Study of Commercial Activity at Ryerson University, the ranking looks at total estimated retail sales in the fiscal year of 2018/2019.

“…in Fiscal 2018/2019 we find that the level of corporate concentration amongst Canada’s top 10 retail conglomerates has increased, however, concentration for the top 100 retail conglomerates as a group has declined as the industry is increasingly being impacted by online retail sales,” CSCA stated.

The top 10 retailers of the 100 in 2018/2019 made up 48% of national retail sales, increasing from 43% in 2014. The list has changed over time, especially with store closures, mergers, and acquisitions.

The bulk of sales were in grocery and beverage stores (20.3%), general merchandise (17.8%), and health and personal care (8.4%).

The CSCA Retail 100 does not necessarily account for online sales — only when those sales are included in store-based sales reporting. If that were reflected, this list might also include Amazon, which had estimated sales in Canada of $16.6 billion in 2018.

The following retailers led the industry in 2019:

1. George Weston Ltd.

The George Weston brand includes stores such as Shoppers Drug Mart and Loblaws. In the 2018/2019 year, they had 2,609 stores in Canada and 33 chains.

Their retail sales for the fiscal year totalled nearly $46 billion.

The 2018/2019 year was the first that the new PC Optimum program came into effect.

2. Costco Inc.

Costco had 100 stores across Canada in 2018/2019 and continues to grow. In the same year, their retail sales totalled almost $27 billion.

Retail Insider reported on Costco’s growing popularity in Canada, commenting that it has put more focus on its grocery presence, all while maintaining a value hunt experience.

3. Empire Company Ltd.

Third on the list was Empire Company Ltd., a brand conglomerate that includes Sobeys, Safeway, IGA, and Farm Boy. In 2019, they had 1,994 stores in the country and combined retail sales of $25 billion.

Farm Boy, in particular, has seen a recent surge in growth since Empire Company Ltd. Purchased the chain in 2018. In 2019, they announced plans to open 10 more stores, including five in downtown Toronto. These additions would bring Farm Boy’s total store count to 37.

4. Walmart Stores Inc.

Walmart and Walmart Supercentres are a continued presence on the list, holding the number four spot in 2018/2019. In the fiscal year, they had 411 stores in Canada in 2019 and retail sales of $24 billion.

In the 2018/2019 year, Walmart Canada also announced plans to renovate 31 of its stores and to invest more than $200 million in its store network.

5. Metro Inc.

The Metro Inc. conglomerate, which includes Metro, Food Basics, and Jean Coutu Pharmacy, had 1,547 stores in the 2018/2019 fiscal year and retail sales of $14.3 billion.

These figures were from before Metro Inc. acquired Jean Coutu Pharmacy at the end of 2017, with the deal closing in May of 2018, which appeared to pay off in the 2018/2019 fiscal year.

Metro’s fiscal 2019 sales were up 16.6% from $14.38 billion in fiscal 2018 — with $1.16 billion of that generated by Jean Coutu.

6. Canadian Tire Corporation

The Canadian Tire Corporation, which includes Canadian Tire, Mark’s Work Wearhouse, and SportChek, had 1,425 stores in the 2018/2019 and retail sales of $10.5 billion.

7. McKesson Corporation

The McKesson Corporation, made up of IDA Pharmacy, Rexall Drug Store, and Uniprix, had 2,343 stores in the 2018/2019 year and $9.2 billion sales.

8. Lowe’s

Lowe’s and Rona had 649 stores in Canada in 2018/2019 and total sales of $8.5 billion.

9. The Home Depot Inc.

Home Depot Inc. had 182 stores across the country in 2018/2019 and $8.4 billion in sales.

10. Home Hardware Stores Limited

Rounding out the top 10 was Home Hardware Stores, which had 1,076 stores and $6.1 billion in sales.

Home Hardware was one of our recent retail success stories. Read it here:

View the full 100 stores in the CSCA Retail 100 here:

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Marketsupport Canada can help your brand stand out from the crowd and ensure accurate pricing, placement, stock levels, and more at-store and online. Learn more by calling 1-877-421-5081 or visiting

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