Top 400 Retail and Wholesale Companies Germany – List of the Largest Trading Companies

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“The best overview of German retail companies.”

  • Excel list of the 400 largest German retail companies (by revenue) for download
  • Contains: Wholesalers, retailers and online traders incl. industry information
  • Including: sales (2015-2018), number of employees, e-mail, address, telephone number, management, etc.
  • Download of the Excel file valid indefinitely, free updates within one year after purchase, free preview file available
  • Last update: 07.08.2020

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Database of the largest retail companies in Germany for immediate download as Excel list

With the database of the largest retail companies in Germany, Research Germany offers a unique market overview of the most important players. In addition to general contact data of the largest German retailers, the list also contains the turnover of the last few years as well as the number of employees. This makes it easy to sort and filter the largest trading companies in Germany according to size. In addition, the database contains information on the industry in which the respective companies are active, so that you can identify the right partners for your project without spending hours of your own research. Our lists are updated regularly and are always up to date. As a customer, you will receive our updates free of charge by e-mail within one year of purchase. You can purchase the database directly as an Excel list via our online shop and start working right away. Lead generation in the German retail industry has never been easier.

Part of our list of the largest retail companies in Germany: Retailers, wholesalers, online retailers

The retail sector reflects the German economy in its variety. Many retailers specialise in specific sectors and are market leaders in their respective industries. With our list of the largest retailers in Germany, we cover all areas and make this difficult-to-understand industry transparent. You can use the database to identify specific retailers, wholesalers or e-commerce companies. Thanks to our categorization and segmentation you can see at a glance in which industries the respective companies are active. Thus, our list offers much more than just an address database.

This information is included in the list:

  • Company name
  • General contact information (address, e-mail address, telephone number, website)
  • Names of the executives
  • Revenues for the years 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015 (taken from the respective annual and consolidated financial statements)
  • Number of employees (based on the respective annual and consolidated financial statements)
  • Classification by industry (see below)
  • Own stationary trade (yes/no)
  • Own online trade (yes/no)

Map with the headquarters of the largest retail companies from Germany based on our list:

list of the largest trading and wholesale companies in germany research list

The following segments of the German retail industry are covered by the address database:

In order to give you an impression of the scope of our database, we list below some industries that are covered by the database. Our research team has developed a field of activity for each company, combining the necessary granularity with a meaningful segmentation and categorization.

Wholesale Trade:

  • Electrical wholesale (e.g. UNI ELEKTRO Fachgroßhandel GmbH & Co. KG)
  • Industrial trade (e.g. Klöckner & Co SE)
  • Chemical trade (e.g. Brenntag AG)
  • Pharmaceutical trade (e.g. GEHE Pharma Handel GmbH)
  • Construction trade (e.g. EUROBAUSTOFF Handelsgesellschaft mbH & Co. KG)
  • Sanitary trade (e.g. Richter + Frenzel GmbH & Co. KG)
  • etc.

Retail:

  • Food retail trade (LEH) (e.g. EDEKA ZENTRALE AG & Co KG)
  • Wine trade (e.g. Hanseatisches Wein- und Sekt-Kontor Hawesko GmbH)
  • Fashion and textile trade (e.g. Peek & Cloppenburg KG)
  • Mail order business (e.g. Otto GmbH & Co KG)
  • Vehicle trade (e.g. Mahag Automobilhandel und Service GmbH & Co. OHG)
  • Furniture trade (e.g. POCO Einrichtungsmärkte GmbH)
  • Book trade (e.g. H. Hugendubel GmbH & Co. KG)
  • etc.

Online Trade / E-Commerce:

  • Online fashion trade (e.g. Zalando SE, mytheresa.com GmbH)
  • Online furniture trade (e.g. home24 SE)
  • Online trade in children’s products (e.g. windeln.de SE, babymarkt.de GmbH)
  • Online music store (e.g. Thomann GmbH)
  • Online wine trade (e.g. Vicampo.de GmbH)
  • etc.

Why ResearchGermany is the best contact for high-quality German industry lists

In recent years, the research team of Research Germany has established itself as a trusted partner for lead generation in Germany. Our databases are characterized by high data quality and valuable additional information on the companies contained in them. We work with modern, software-supported research methods to make industries that are difficult to understand easily accessible. However, we check every entry manually because we believe that fully automated research never meets the quality standards we want to offer our clients. If you have any questions about our service or are interested in a preview file of our lists, we will be happy to assist you. Just send us a short e-mail to contact[at]researchgermany.com and we will get back to you as soon as possible. We are also available for individual orders. By the way, we cover many other areas of the German economy besides the German retail industry. Examples are our list of the largest German industrial companies with the highest turnover or the database of the largest real estate investors in Germany. We look forward to welcoming you as a customer and to providing you with real added value with our data.

Picture sources: chuttersnap, Bhawin Jagad

List of the 5 Largest Trading Companies in Germany

Trade is one of the central economic sectors in Germany. Trading companies contribute about 16 percent of the gross domestic product and provide a good 3 million jobs. These are the 5 largest trading companies in the Federal Republic of Germany:

#1: EDEKA ZENTRALE AG & Co. KG, Hamburg: Revenues of €55.7 Billion (2019)

EDEKA is the largest German food retailer. The group and the decentralised cooperative organisation enter into a unique symbiosis. The EDEKA headquarters is the umbrella for 7 regional companies. Around 4,500 independent EDEKA retailers form the basis. The network includes, among others, the discounter Netto, various bakery chains, beverage retailers and self-service department stores.

#2: REWE Deutscher Supermarkt AG & Co. KGaA, Cologne: Revenues of €55.4 Billion (2019)

With around 3,600 stores, REWE is the number 2 in German food retailing and at the same time Germany’s second largest trading company. Originally organised as a cooperative, Rewe has long since formed a group of companies. The current structure has been in place since 2006, when various supermarket chains of the Group were merged under the REWE brand. The discounter Penny also belongs to REWE.

#3: METRO AG, Düsseldorf: Revenues of  €27.1 Billion (2018/19)

METRO AG was created in 2017 from the split-up of the old Metro Group and combined the retail chains Metro Cash & Carry and Real. The Real stores were sold to an investor group in February 2020. What remained is essentially Metro Cash & Carry – an international wholesale chain with a total of 760 self-service wholesale stores in 25 countries.

#4: PHOENIX Pharmahandel GmbH & Co KG, Mannheim: Revenues of €25.8 Billion (2018/19)

PHOENIX Pharmahandel is the number 1 pharmaceutical wholesaler in Germany and a leading European healthcare provider. The company belongs to the Merckle Group – a conglomerate with a focus on pharmaceuticals. PHOENIX Pharmahandel supplies 56,000 pharmacies in 27 countries with pharmaceuticals and healthcare products.

#5: CECONOMY AG, Düsseldorf: Revenues of €21.5 Billion (2018/19)

Like METRO AG, CECONOMY was created in 2017 from the split-up of the old Metro Group. Since then the consumer electronics chains Mediamarkt and Saturn have been operating under the new name. In operational terms, the stores are organized under the umbrella of the MediaMarktSaturn Retail Group in Ingolstadt. The individual stores are legally independent units and each is majority-owned by the MediaMarktSaturn Retail Group.

Statistics based on the ResearchGermany database of the largest wholesale and trading companies in Germany

The ResearchGermany database of the German retail industry covers all segments of retail throughout the Federal Republic. Thanks to the extensive data set, we are able to publish interesting statistics. In the following, we present the distribution of the trading companies from our list by federal state and city in clear graphs. On request we are also able to prepare individual analyses.

Distribution of the headquarters of the largest German trading companies on our list by federal state

Research Germany List of the largest trading and wholesale companies by federal state

Most German trading companies are based in Bavaria or North Rhine-Westphalia. Both states are home to more than 100 of the largest German trading companies in the wholesale, retail and online trade sectors. In general, the distribution by federal state roughly corresponds to the general distribution of the largest companies in Germany (see here).

Distribution of the headquarters of the largest German trading companies on our list by city

list of the largest retail and trading companies research germany

Most of the largest trading companies in Germany are located in economically strong regions or in the cities with the most inhabitants. However, the distribution of headquarters by city shows that there are some interesting exceptions. This is particularly related to regional industrial clusters, which are also reflected in the retail sector.

The German retail industry: Statistics and facts

The retail sector is the interface between producers of goods and consumers. Retailers procure the products in demand from manufacturers and offer them “locally”. A distinction is made between wholesale and retail trade. Wholesalers sell their goods to commercial customers – including retailers – and to bulk buyers. The retail trade, on the other hand, offers its goods to private end users. Within the framework of this distinction, there are several dozen retail sectors.

According to the Federal Statistical Office, the German wholesale and retail trade represents an annual turnover of 2.19 trillion Euros and 6.4 million employees. There are about 150,000 wholesalers and about 300,000 retailers. In 2019 the retail trade achieved sales of almost 550 billion euros. One of the most important retail sectors is food retailing. It accounts for about 20 percent of retail sales. Internet trading has become increasingly important in recent years. It has developed into a serious competitor for stationary trade. Almost every eighth euro in retail is now generated in online stores. This share is likely to increase even further in future.

The retail sector is characterized by strong market concentration overall. In many retail sectors – for example in food retailing – the market is dominated by a few large chains. By contrast, the wholesale sector is less highly concentrated. Here, medium-sized companies are typical. Around one-fifth of those employed in retail work for wholesalers, while 80 percent are employed in the retail sector.

Frequently asked questions about our list of the largest trading and wholesale companies in Germany

The most important questions about our list of the largest mechanical enigneering companies Germany

The companies included in the list can be found through various sources: Internet research, public registers, analysis of relevant news, investigation of relevant transactions, our extensive personal network. Hundreds of hours of detailed, high-quality research flow into each of our lists. All data points that we can enter via publicly available sources are included in our lists.

Every data point for which there is publicly available information is filled out in our lists. However, if we do not have an e-mail address or we do not know whether a company is investing in a particular area, we fill this field with an “n.a.”. In most cases we achieve a data coverage of over 90%. If you want to know the exact coverage of the list – e.g. how many e-mail addresses are available – our team will be happy to help you.

Our lists are always delivered as handy Excel files. On request we can also send you the list as a CSV file.

After purchasing the list, you can immediately download the list as an Excel file when paying by credit card or PayPal. You will also receive a download link by e-mail. Future free updates will also be sent to you by e-mail. If you pay in advance, you will receive the list after the amount has been credited to our account or you have sent us a bank transfer receipt.

We have noted the last update date in the product description at the top of the page. We update our lists regularly. Our customers receive free updates and additions to the list for at least 12 months.

Our lists contain – if publicly available – address, telephone number, e-mail addresses and management names of the listed companies. For privacy reasons, we may only include information that is publicly available or provided by the companies. If no data points are available, there is an “n.a.” in the corresponding field.

Due to the DSGVO our lists do not contain personal e-mail addresses and telephone numbers. Our lists contain publicly available contact data or contact data provided by the companies (e-mail address, telephone number, postal address, names of directors).

Our lists do not contain any personal contact data that is specifically protected by the European Data Protection Regulation (DSGVO). Our lists always contain publicly accessible data points (official registers such as the Commercial Register or the Federal Gazette, Internet, company websites) or data provided voluntarily by companies and are therefore harmless.
In Germany, contact is regulated by §7 UWG. Thus, postal advertising in the B2B sector is generally permitted. Contacting by telephone is permitted if the business contact is presumably interested. This can also be accepted for e-mail contact, as long as the contact is made once and the contact is not included in newsletters without being asked.
Important note: We are not lawyers and cannot make legally binding statements. If you have any open questions, please feel free to contact us.

The companies included in the lists can be contacted in various ways – by telephone, postal letter, e-mail, networks such as LinkedIn, jointly attended trade fairs. In order to establish successful contacts, it is particularly important to work on individualized addresses tailored to the respective companies. Mass letters are rarely successful. Instead, our customers are most successful when they adapt to the companies included in our lists, obtain information and then address them in a customized manner. Another successful approach is to contact them via LinkedIn, for example, by selecting the right contact person from our list and then addressing them via a consistent starting point. Intros” that are mediated via shared contacts are also a good step towards establishing contact. Also possible: at trade fairs visited together, you can use the trade fair lists to search specifically for companies included in the lists and make appointments for meetings.
In general: the more effort is put into the individual approach, the more successful it is. Think about what suitable starting points are, how you can deliver added value and show the addressed companies that you put a lot of effort into the contact. Many of our customers have already built up valuable and successful business relationships.

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