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Review of the retail sector

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The retail sector is a US$3 trillion market. The top five global retailers alone had sales of US$1 trillion in 2002. The retail sector has evolved into a global maze of sourcing and production channels for the myriad consumer goods demanded primarily by consumers in industrialised economies. Characterised by fierce competition, global consolidation, transnational expansion and new channels of distribution, the retail sector is dominated by global players which include department stores, mass merchandisers, clothing retailers, speciality retailers, convenience stores, grocery stores, drug stores, home-furnishing retailers, consumer electronics retailers, Internet retailers, catalogue and mail-order companies. Of note is the fact that competitors in the retail sector often share any number of the literally thousands of global supplier factories in low-wage developing economies which are contracted for production.

Keywords: retail; review; sector

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: November 8, 2004

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