The Top 10 Retailers In Canada

With news of store closures popping up all of the time, it’s nice to hear a company’s successes every once in a while.
The Top 10 Retailers In Canada

With news of store closures popping up all of the time, it’s nice to hear a company’s successes every once in a while.

Recently, the Centre for the Study of Commercial Activity (CSCA) at Ryerson University conducted a study on the top 100 retail conglomerates in Canada to find out which retailer ranked best. Using the estimated retail sales from the 2017 fiscal year, the CSCA was able to determine which conglomerates have the most influence over shoppers.

Interestingly enough, the 100 top Canadian retailers retailers who made the list account for 75.5% of non-automotive sales in Canada.

The top three retailers accounting for 28% of non-automotive sales. All together, the 100 retailers drove $276 billion dollars in retail sales. The top 33 retailers all had at least $1 billion in sales.

Other companies that made the list but didn’t rank in the top 10 include Bass Pro Inc., Ashley Industries Inc., Fabricland, Footlocker Inc., and Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited, the latter of which recently acquired Toys “R” Us. While some retailers who topped the list surprised us, others are no-brainers.

Here are the 10 top Canadian retailers:

1. Weston Group

beauty clinic by shoppers drug mart
Featured image: Flickr/Open Grid Scheduler

You’ve definitely heard this name before. The conglomerate owns establishments that Canadians visit every day. The company’s roster of 35 retailers includes Shoppers Drug Mart, Real Canadian Superstore, and No Frills. In 2017, Weston group was estimated to bring in over $46.2 billion in retail sales.

2. Walmart Stores Inc.

top retailers Canada

Was there any doubt that Walmart would make this list? The big box store, which has over 400 locations across Canada, was estimated to make just over $32.4 billion USD in retail sales at the end of 2017’s fiscal year. Between just two chains, Walmart and Walmart Superstores, that’s a whole lot of money.

3. Costco Wholesale Corp.

best return policies

Another store that Canadians frequently visit is Costco. Although the retailer has a significantly smaller location number than other retailers on this list — 94 compared to Weston Group’s 2797 and Walmart Stores Inc.’s 410 — Costco is able to bring in the big bucks. At the end of 2017’s fiscal year, they had estimated retail sales of $24.6 billion.

4. Empire Company Limited

top Canadian retailers

For those unfamiliar with the name, more recognizable retailers that fall under the conglomerate’s roster include Sobeys, Safeway, and IGA. While the company ranked lower than Costco, retail sales were close, with Empire Company Limited pulling in an estimated $24.2 billion.

5. Metro Inc.

top canadian retailers

Unsurprisingly, another grocery conglomerate tops the list of Canada’s top 10 retailers. Under the Metro Inc. umbrella, shoppers will find Metro, Food Basics, and Metro PLUS. With 866 stores across Canada, the company had retail sales estimated at $13.1 billion — a big jump down from the four company’s that topped the list.

6. McKesson Corp.


The company behind Rexall, IDA Pharmacy, and Uniprix comes in sixth on the list. With 11 chains underneath the brand’s umbrella and 2234 locations across Canada (the second largest store count after Weston Group), McKesson Corp. was able to pull in an estimated $10.9 billion USD in retail sales.

7. Canadian Tire Corp. Ltd.

Number seven needs no introduction! In addition to Canadian Tire, the conglomerate also has retailers like Mark’s Work Wearhouse and Sport Chek on its roster, with 12 chains and 1321 store locations in total. At the end of the 2017 fiscal year, Canadian Tire Corp. Ltd. brought in a whopping $10.2 billion in retail sales.

 8. Lowe’s Companies Inc.


Despite an announcement of store closures across North America, Lowe’s Companies Inc. seems to be doing quite well, ranking as the eight most successful retailer on this list. The company brought in an estimated $8.6 billion USD with just 878 retail locations. In addition to Lowe’s, the company also has Rona under its brand umbrella.

9. The Home Depot Inc.

home depot
Home Depot

Coming in ninth on the top Canadian retailers list is The Home Depot. With only one chain and 182 stores across Canada, the retailer was able to bring in estimated sales of $8.1 billion USD. That’s a whole lot of home improvement supplies!

10. Home Hardware Stores Ltd.

home hardware
Flickr/Scott Lewis

With an estimated $6.1 billion in retail sales, 10th on the list of top Canadian retailers is Home Hardware Stores Ltd. The home improvement conglomerate has a total of 4 chains including Home Hardware and Home Building Centre, and has 1069 locations across Canada.

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