Retail trade in Europe - Statistics and Facts

The total value of the European retail trade in 2014 was roughly 3.1 trillion euros. The largest and most important retail market in Europe in terms of turnover was the Russian market, with a value of roughly 430 billion euros in 2014. Other important markets were France (approximately 420 billion euros), Germany (roughly 418 billion euros) and the United Kingdom (approximately 400 billion euros). Of these major markets, only the UK saw an increase in retail trade volume in 2014. The French and German markets both saw a decrease of volume, by 1.3 and 1.7 percent respectively. The most promising markets in 2014 were Luxembourg, with a turnover growth of 9.2 percent, and Estonia, with 7.1 percent. The lowest dropl in turnover was visible in Malta (-1.4 percent), Finland (-1.1 percent) and Croatia (-0.5 percent).


The most valuable retail brand in Europe in 2016 was Nestlé, with a brand value of roughly 23 billion euros, followed by IKEA (approximately 17 billion euros). Nestlé also tops the list of the leading consumer goods companies in Europe, with a market capitalization of 223 billion euros. Based on turnover however, the German company Schwarz was the leading retailer in Europe in 2016, with 86 billion euros. Carrefour (67 billion euros) and Tesco (65 billion euros) were the second and third-largest retailers that year. With regard to market capitalization, Inditex came first, with a value of 94 billion euros. Tesco and Carrefour were ranked third and fourth in this list, whereas Schwarz did not make the top 10 of the market capitalization ranking at all.

The leading franchise in Europe in 2017 is U.S.'s 7-Eleven, with 55,944 units. 7-Eleven is followed by Subway (44,589 units) and McDonald's (30,197 units). The largest non-US company is the Japanese Kumon (25,800 units). In comparison, Spar, the leading Benelux franchise, only has 12,176 units in 2017. 234 of these Spar supermarkets are located in its country of origin, the Netherlands.

Europe’s largest shopping centers can be found in Russia. Five of the ten largest, including the largest and the second-largest in Europe, are located there. With some 230,000 square meters Moscow’s Avia Park is the largest shopping mall on the continent, followed by MEGA Belaya Dacha (214,000 square meters), which is located right outside of the capital. Outside of Russia, Spain’s Puerto Venecia (Zaragoza) is the largest mall, with a floor space of roughly 207,000 square meters. In 2016, Norway had the highest gross leasable shopping area per 1,000 inhabitants, followed by Estonia.

Although the majority of retail transactions still take place offline, online retail gained more and more prominence over the last few years. In 2015, the e-commerce revenue in Europe was valued at approximately 255 million U.S. dollars, but according to a recent Statista forecast this is expected to nearly double in the next five years, to approximately 430 million U.S. dollars. Whereas now roughly 300 million consumers purchase goods online, by 2021 this number is expected to increase to 380 million.

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