Costco Wholesale Corporation said that its sales in May rose by 9 percent at stores open at least a year. The rise in sales became larger than analysts expected. Many of them believed that the company’s same-store sales would rise by 6.9 percent.
The net sales of Costco Wholesale Corporation increased by 12 percent and made up $5.77 billion in the four weeks ending June 1.
Costco Wholesale Corporation is the largest membership warehouse club chain in the world based on sales volume, headquartered in Issaquah, Washington, United States, with its flagship warehouse in nearby Seattle.
In the mid-1970s, small business owners had no options other than to buy their products and supplies from regional wholesalers or cash-and-carry operations. Sol Price set out to offer an alternative. In 1976, with $800,000 of his own, $1 million rose among local California small business owners and an additional $500,000 from former FedMart employees, Price, along with his son Robert, formed the Price Company and opened the first Price Club store in San Diego. Price's other son, Laurence, declined to join the new company.
The main competitor in the membership warehouse space is Sam's Club. Although Sam's Club has more warehouses than Costco, Costco has higher total sales volume. Costco employs about 132,000 full- and part-time employees, including seasonal workers. It has 51.8 million members, representing 28.3 million households. For fiscal year 2007, which ended on September 2, 2007, the company's store sales totaled $64.4 billion. In 2006, $1.1 billion of the revenue was net profit. Costco is #32 on the Fortune 500.