The 2020 Mid-Year Economic Update_long

Grainger’s 2020 Sales Up 2.7%

Industrial distributor Grainger says its fourth-quarter sales were up 3.3% as the company continued to deal with the “challenges and uncertainty” of COVID-19.
Grainger DC, Minooka, Illinois

Grainger (NYSE: GWW), Chicago, on Wednesday reported 2020 sales increased 2.7% — or  3.5% on an organic basis — to $11.8 billion, while the company’s profit decreased 18.1% to $695 million for the year.

“2020 was a year filled with challenges and uncertainty,” said DG Macpherson, Grainger’s chairman and CEO. “I’m proud of how the Grainger team made quick, prudent decisions to best serve our customers, keep our employees safe, and remain in a strong financial position. In both the full-year and fourth quarter 2020, despite the challenges of the pandemic, we delivered solid top-line growth by gaining significant share in the U.S. and delivering impressive growth in our endless assortment businesses. In addition, we managed SG&A spending below the prior year while continuing to generate significant operating cash flow. In 2020, we demonstrated our ability to deliver in tough economic times and expect business performance will improve sequentially as the virus subsides throughout the year. We remain confident in our strategy and excited about 2021 and beyond.”

Grainger reported fourth-quarter sales of $2.9 billion, up 3.3% compared to the year-ago quarter, or 5.6% on an organic daily basis compared to the fourth quarter 2019 (excluding divestitures and foreign exchange).

Grainger’s profit increased 63% to $168 million, while diluted earnings per share of $3.12 were up from $1.88 in 4Q 2019 and missed analysts’ estimates by 75 cents.

Daily sales for the quarter increased 5.6% as compared to the 2019 fourth quarter. Sales increases were fueled by share gains in the U.S. segment and significant growth in the endless assortment businesses which more than offset declines in the Canada segment.

Related Posts

About the Author
Leave a Reply

Leave a Comment

Sign Up for the MDM Update Newsletter

The MDM update newsletter is your best source for news and trends in the wholesale distribution industry.

By subscribing, you are agreeing to MDM’s Privacy Policy.

Subscribe to continue reading

MDM Premium Subscribers get:

  • Unlimited access to
  • 1 year digital subscription, with new issues twice a month
  • Trends analysis, market data and quarterly economic updates
  • Deals on select store products and events


articles left

Want more Premium content from MDM?

Subscribe today and get:

  • New issues twice each month
  • Unlimited access to, including 10+ years of archived data
  • Current trends analysis, market data and economic updates
  • Discounts on select store products and events



You have one free article remaining

Subscribe to MDM Premium to get unlimited access. Your subscription includes:

  • Two new issues a month
  • Access to 10+ years of archived data on
  • Quarterly economic updates, trends analysis and market data
  • Store and event discounts

To continue reading, you must be an MDM Premium subscriber.

Join other distribution executives who use MDM Premium to optimize their business. Our insights and analysis help you enter the right new markets, turbocharge your sales and marketing efforts, identify business partners that help you scale, and stay ahead of your competitors.