As an experienced ecommerce seller, one of the most common questions I get asked is: "Does Walmart own Lowe‘s?"
The short answer is no, Walmart does not own Lowe‘s in any capacity. But their relationship as major national retail chains does impact product selection and pricing for sellers.
In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll use my insider expertise to break down the facts around Walmart and Lowe‘s ownership, competition, and product strategies. I‘ll also share tips on how sellers can effectively compete with these retail giants.
After reading, you‘ll have a complete understanding of:
Lowe‘s ownership structure and major shareholders
How Walmart and Lowe‘s compete on certain products
What key services differentiate Lowe‘s from Walmart
The many brands Walmart does own
How Lowe‘s competes against Walmart‘s scale and influence
Strategies sellers can use to compete with Walmart and Lowe‘s
Let‘s dive in!
Lowe‘s Operates Independently – No Majority Owner
First, it‘s important to understand Lowe‘s ownership. Lowe‘s is a publicly traded company listed on the NYSE under ticker symbol LOW with a market cap of around $115 billion as of March 2023.
Here are some key facts on who owns and controls Lowe‘s:
No majority shareholder – The largest holder is Capital World Investors with only 9.8% of shares.
Independent executive team – Lowe‘s CEO is Marvin R. Ellison, who leads an executive team and Board of Directors running the company.
Founded in 1921 – Lowe‘s has operated for over a century as an independent home improvement retailer.
So in contrast to many brands Walmart owns, Lowe‘s is not majority owned or controlled by any single entity. Its ownership is distributed across numerous shareholders.
As a seller, it‘s useful to know Lowe’s maintains autonomy over its merchandising and pricing versus fully Walmart-owned brands. This gives you some leeway to negotiate your wholesale costs.
Home Improvement Products – Prime Area of Competition
Now let‘s examine the relationship between Walmart and Lowe‘s products.
While their overall merchandise differs, home improvement is one area where Walmart and Lowe‘s go head-to-head:
|Category||Walmart Selection||Lowe‘s Selection|
|Tools||Limited variety of basics||Extensive selection of pro brands across all home project needs|
|Paint supplies||Lower-end brands in basic colors||All major brands, thousands of specialty colors|
|Major appliances||Budget models of top brands||Broadest assortment of brands/models|
|Patio furniture||Mostly Walmart private label||Wide range of materials, styles, and price points|
As you can see, Lowe‘s has a much larger selection focused specifically on home improvement categories. But Walmart competes by offering basic products at everyday low prices.
As a seller, focus on having the top selling SKUs of tools, paints, or appliances available at both Walmart and Lowe‘s to maximize exposure. Customize packaging and bundles for each retailer.
Services Differentiate Lowe‘s In-Store Experience
Beyond products, Lowe‘s also offers specialized services that help differentiate their in-store experience from Walmart:
In-home consultations – Lowe‘s has an army of over 18,000 employees who can come measure and provide advice right in a customer‘s home. No need to come into the store.
Installation services – Whether it‘s flooring, lighting fixtures, or kitchen remodels, Lowe‘s has experienced teams to handle full installation. This convenience keeps customers coming back.
Personal shopping assistance – Lowe‘s provides one-on-one help selecting products and planning complex projects for DIYers. Walmart has minimal by comparison.
As a seller, make sure to highlight when your products include installation services or have projects specialists available. This aligns with what Lowe‘s customers value.
Extensive List of Retailers Walmart Does Own
Walmart may not own Lowe‘s, but the retail giant does have majority control of thousands of stores under many different brands:
- Walmart Supercenters – 3,570 locations
- Walmart Discount Stores – 698 locations
- Neighborhood Markets – 698 locations
Other U.S. Retail Chains
- Sam‘s Club – 599 locations
- Asda – 631 locations
- Jet.com (eCommerce)
- Hayneedle (eCommerce)
- Bonobos (eCommerce)
- ModCloth (eCommerce)
- Moosejaw (eCommerce)
- ShoeBuy (eCommerce)
International Retail Chains
- Best Price (India)
- Seiyu (Japan)
- Bodega Aurrerá (Mexico)
- Massmart (Africa)
(See the full list of brands owned)
That‘s over 10,000 stores just in the U.S.! As a seller, the scale of Walmart provides massive product distribution, so focus on getting your items in their stores. But balance that with Lowe‘s independence and specialty shoppers.
How Lowe‘s Competes with Walmart‘s Scale
Here are some of the factors that allow Lowe‘s to thrive against the retail behemoth Walmart:
- Niche focus on DIY/home improvement vs Walmart‘s non-specialized model
- Highly-trained floor staff with project expertise
- In-store design studios for kitchens, baths, patios
- Longstanding supplier relationships in lumber, tools, etc.
- Strong brand loyalty built over 100+ years
As a seller, these tips can help you compete through differentiation, outstanding service, and fostering community connections. While Walmart dominates on price and convenience, build your brand through expertise and relationships.
Final Takeaways – Walmart Doesn‘t Own Lowe‘s
Let me summarize the key points for sellers on Walmart and Lowe‘s:
Lowe‘s operates independently as a publicly traded company; Walmart owns no stake
They compete across home improvement categories, but Lowe’s has much greater project selection
Services like installations and in-home design set Lowe’s apart from Walmart
Walmart owns thousands of retail stores under many different brands
By focusing on specialization, service and loyalty, Lowe‘s competes successfully vs. Walmart
-Sellers should offer top selling product SKUs through both retailers but customize strategies
So while they compete on certain products, overall Walmart and Lowe‘s have vastly different models. Understanding their relationship helps sellers maximize sales opportunities.
I hope this insider guide has provided valuable perspective into retail giants Walmart and Lowe‘s! Let me know if you have any other questions.