How M&A Impacted This Year’s Top Distributors Rankings

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How M&A Impacted This Year’s Top Distributors Rankings

WESCO’s acquisition of Anixter, Builders FirstSource’s merger with BMC Stock Holdings, and multiple changes at HD Supply Holdings all factored into MDM’s latest lists of industry market leaders.

M&A again played a huge role in determining the order of MDM’s latest Top Distributor rankings, which we partially unveiled in last week’s webcast.

As consolidation accelerated across the industry — especially in the latter half of 2020 as deal-making resumed against the easing of COVID-19 restrictions on business — some of the biggest distributors united, resulting in some shifts to this year’s lists.

The most significant change occurred in the Electrical sector. One year ago, on June 22, 2020, WESCO International Inc. completed its $4.5 billion acquisition of Anixter International Inc. That move propelled WESCO into the No. 1 ranking for the sector with $11 billion in sales. It narrowly took the top spot long held by Sonepar USA, which slid to No. 2 with $10.8 billion.

In next year’s rankings, look for WESCO to pad its lead on the competition — barring additional M&A, of course. Once WESCO has a full year of the Anixter acquisition under its belt, its annual revenue should jump significantly. For example, the company reported $4 billion of sales in the first quarter of 2021, so look for WESCO’s annual revenue to hover around the $16 billion mark.

Biggest changes

The Building & Construction sector has probably seen the most upheaval in MDM’s Top Distributors list over the last few years, and 2021 was no different. Builders FirstSource, on the strength of its mammoth merger with BMC Stock Holdings, has taken over No. 1 — though not by much.

Builders FirstSource posted revenue of $12.8 billion, ahead of ABC Supply Co. ($12.1 billion), thanks to its merger with BMC, which had been No. 5.

The company that saw the biggest M&A-driven changes last year — and which altered our Top 40 Industrial & Construction list — was HD Supply Holdings Inc.

The company fell to No. 14 in the 2020 rankings from No. 4 the year before due to the divestment of its White Cap division, and then HD Supply was acquired later in the year by The Home Depot.

Two weeks ago, a representative from The Home Depot informed MDM that the company would no longer break out HD Supply’s annual sales, but HD Supply said they would continue to report sales to MDM so we will indeed still rank the company in future Top Distributors.

These are just some of the highlights from our Top Distributors preview of how M&A impacted the rankings. Look for more analysis on the role consolidation played in the 2021 lists in the June 25 edition of MDM Premium. And click here to watch the full MDM Top Distributors 2021 Webcast.

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