Distributors are the backbone of retail chain stores across the nation. They replenish stocks when required and maintain quality of products irrespective of the storage conditions. The main function of wholesale store distributors is to supply to large convenience stores as well as regional wholesalers who in turn supply to small convenience stores in their area. These wholesalers also have storage and distribution locations close to a majority of their retailers, which helps them save up on distribution costs. The top 25 convenience store wholesalers in the United States reported an annual turnover of 53.9 billion dollars during the financial year 2010 at the height of economic crisis.
Convenience store chains tend to buy stock from more than three to four wholesalers, to reduce dependence on one seller and also to enjoy discounts and offers given by other distributors. Several of the existing convenience store wholesale distributors work directly with manufacturers to source their products which can be stored for a longer period of time. In general, these wholesalers follow two storage formats in which they either stock the same product made by several manufacturers like frozen desserts, cold drinks, water and other dairy products or all products made by one manufacturer. Under the latter format the convenience store wholesaler becomes a form of sole distributor for the manufacturer. For manufacturers seeking a wide market for their products, getting in touch with a convenience store distributor will be a more profitable business proposition as they have a wide reach across retailers in a geographical region.
1. McLane Co Inc – This 120-year-old logistics powerhouse had set up its business as a retail grocer in 1894 and soon grew to become a wholesaler cum distributor for groceries across the United States during the 1960s and 1970s. Today McLane Company Inc. sells 50,000 consumer products to convenience stores across 90000 locations and is a $44 billion turnover firm that is ranked first among convenience store wholesale distributors across the nation.
2. Core-Mark Hold Company Inc – This California-based convenience store wholesaler began business in 1888 as a tobacco merchant and is today among the largest distributors of fresh farm products to retail industry along with groceries, drugs and other specialty products. It supplies to 29000 locations across United States to both large and small format stores which sell only fast moving branded consumer goods. Core Mark has an annual turnover of $10 billion and offers information about promotions and deals to its regular retails via mobile applications.
3. Eby-Brown Co – Regarded as the largest family owned distribution network within the nation, this firm has been distributing tobacco, candy and products used by convenience stores across 13500 locations for nearly 120 years. Owned by the Wake family for more than 55 years it also manufactures Wakefield range of food products. This c store wholesale distributor currently has an annual turnover of 4.5 billion and employs 2000 people at its distribution centers.
4. H. T. Hackney Co – This fourth largest convenience store wholesalers services 30000 convenience stores along with grocers, drugstores and food stores by offering them a wide choice of 25000 varieties of products. In the past 120 years of business the firm’s network has grown to 30 distribution centers across 22 states and has increased buying power of convenience store owners.
5. GSC Enterprises Inc – When the McKenzie brothers and Woodrow Brittain founded this company in 1947 there were already around 50 grocery distributors within a 100 mile radius of GCS but they persevered from a small warehouse in Mt.Vernon and within 1965 it grew to 42000 square foot warehouse in Texas. Today the firm has a 400,000 square feet large warehouse with products distributed across Midwest and southwest. Rapid adoption of technology has helped GSC grow into top c store wholesale distributors and achieve annual turnover of $3 billion.
6. Farner-Bocken Co – This Iowa-based wholesale distributor is family owned since 1939 and supplies nearly 14000 categories of convenience foods and beverages along with tobacco and beauty products. They also supply dry goods, meat and dairy products as convenience store wholesalers to convenience stores, restaurants and food service suppliers.
7. Harold Levinson Associates Inc – Established in 1977, HLA has lived the American dream of growing out of a car trunk into a 600,000 square feet c store wholesale distributors with 100 trucks making 3000 deliveries on a daily basis. HLA’s distribution outlets are placed in NewYork, Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Jersey which supply to food items, health and beauty care products to locations across Florida and Midwest.
8. Imperial/Harrison Supe – Established by Greek immigrant C. H. Pelias in 1916, as a distributer for stores in New Orleans it now has a warehouse facility almost 150,000 square-feet. They supply branded products and packaged goods to specialized food service outlets which are serviced by 300 manufacturers. Imperial has a tieup with 50 large manufacturers and to supply of 8000 fresh dairy, meat products and convenience store products across locations in Los Angles.
9. Amcon Distribution Company – This ninth largest convenience store wholesaler supplies 14000 products to 5000 retail outlets like convenience stores, drug stores and grocery outlets across Midwest and Southern states of US. The group has also been ranked by Convenience Store News as ninth largest c store distributor in the United States.
10. S. Abraham & Sons Inc – This store was opened in 1927 by Sleyman Abraham which supplies products across seven states in Midwest. This family owned c store wholesale distributors has been servicing convenience stores across Midwest with confectionery, bakery and grocery products along with frozen and chilled food items since 80 years.
These top ten wholesale convenience store distributors have managed to grow in a competitive business environment and retain their leadership status as they continuously update their product portfolio according to the changing requirements of markets. These firms have adopted technology in their supply and distribution formats to keep in touch with their customers and suppliers to source products at competitive prices and make them available when required.
If you are looking for a full list of convenience store wholesale distributors, please visit us at www.cstoredistributors.com.