The global retail industry continued to grow despite the difficult economic conditions in the world. In the fiscal year of 2011, sales-weighted, currency-adjusted revenue rose by 5.1% to $4.271 trillion for the world’s top 250 retailers.
According to GRDI (Global Retail Development Index), in 2013 Brazil occupied the top spot in retail development. Chile and Uruguay were ranked second and third respectively. Controlled inflation, continued economic and political stability, and sustained economic growth have created a favorable environment for retail development in these Latin American countries. China is ranked fourth but due to the double digit sales growth and rising consumer demand, the Asian country remains a retail powerhouse.
Germany is the most attractive country in terms of the global retail market, as it provides the opportunity to target 20 large cities in one market. It is ahead of UK, France and China. Over 40% of the retailers around the world plan to open a store in Germany in 2014, and this figure increases to 70% when only European retailers are taken into account.
For American retailers, Germany is the second-most important target. In March 2014, sales in US retailing jumped 0.9%. This was the biggest increase since September 2012.
The latest trend in the retail market is the adoption of technology. Technology has enabled consumers to enjoy anytime, anywhere shopping experience. Companies need to have an online presence to increase their customer base and business.
The retail sector has undergone significant transformation in recent decades. Deregulations of foreign investment, land use policy, competition or monopoly policy, alongside broader neoliberal reforms affecting consumer market and trade, have enabled large retailers to consolidate their power and expand globally. On the other hand, small retailers are still dominating in many parts of the world. International corporations are taking over large shares of the market. Large companies are looking to increase their profits and in order to achieve that, they have reduced the risks of investing in subcontracts and franchises. These trends have impacted smaller firms, as well as consumers, suppliers and employees.
Growing economies, changing demographics and increasing disposable income of consumers are the key factors which are going to drive the global retail market in the near future.
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