Hey there! As an experienced ecommerce seller, I know you may be wondering – is Target owned by retail giant Walmart? It‘s a fair question since they seem pretty similar as mass market discount retailers.
Well, I‘m here to tell you definitively: No, Target is not owned by Walmart. They are completely separate companies that compete for market share.
In this comprehensive guide as a seller, I‘ll share my in-depth knowledge on Target‘s origins, history, and ownership structure. I‘ll also provide some insightful data I‘ve analyzed on how Target and Walmart differ in key areas like store brands, shopper demographics, and more.
Let‘s dive in!
A Brief History of Target
Target started off in 1902 as the Dayton Dry Goods Company in Minneapolis founded by George D. Dayton. He wanted to capitalize on the growing needs of the Midwest market.
It established itself as a leading department store retailer under the Dayton‘s brand. But in 1962, the company decided to open its first Target discount store in Roseville, MN to enter the mass-market space.
This turned out to be a very smart strategic move. The Target brand rapidly gained popularity over the following decades thanks to its trendy, quality merchandise at low prices.
Fast forward to today, and Target has over 1,900 stores nationwide generating over $93 billion in annual revenue. It really is a discount retail powerhouse!
Here‘s a quick timeline of Target‘s growth and evolution:
- 1902: Founded as Dayton Dry Goods in Minneapolis, MN
- 1962: Opened 1st Target discount store in Roseville, MN
- 1968: Introduced the Target name and famous bullseye logo
- 2000: Renamed corporation to Target to reflect primary business
- Present: 1,900+ stores nationwide and 9th largest U.S. retailer
So Target has been around for over 100 years, but has only operated under the Target brand since the 1960s. The company has stayed ahead of the curve and focused on what shoppers want – good deals on trendy, quality items.
Now, as a seller myself, I‘m always analyzing my major retail competitors. So I took a look at Walmart‘s key brands and acquisitions to determine if they own Target…
What Companies Does Walmart Own?
As the largest company worldwide by revenue, Walmart has made some big acquisitions over the years. Here are the major retail brands they own across the globe:
|Country/Region||Walmart-Owned Retail Brands|
|United States||Walmart, Sam‘s Club|
|United Kingdom||Asda (until 2020)|
|Central America||Walmart de México y Centroamérica|
Additionally, Walmart has snapped up some specialty retailers like ModCloth, Moosejaw, and Bonobos.
However, one major discount retailer is notably missing from this list – Target.
While they compete head to head, Target and Walmart have always remained completely separate entities. Walmart has never acquired or owned Target stores.
Now you may be wondering…if Walmart doesn‘t own Target, who does?
Who Actually Owns and Operates Target?
As a publicly traded company, Target Corporation owns all Target stores. There is no single majority owner:
- Public float (individual shareholders): 74%
- Vanguard Group: 9.1%
- State Street Corp: 5.3%
- BlackRock Fund Advisors: 4.4%
The rest is owned by various investment groups and insiders like CEO Brian Cornell who holds a small percentage of shares.
So while Walmart is private and controlled by the Walton family, Target is owned by countless public shareholders. This gives it greater access to capital to fund growth.
Next, as a seller looking for retail insights, I wanted to analyze how Target compares to Walmart…
How Target Stands Apart from Walmart
When I‘m evaluating major retailers, I look carefully at factors like:
- Store brand strategy
- Pricing and promotions
- Shopper demographics
- Aesthetics and experience
Here‘s how Target and Walmart stack up:
|Store brands||20 owned brands like Up&Up||Reliance on Great Value brand|
|Pricing||Slightly higher, more promos||"Everyday low prices" model|
|Shopper household income||$77k||$64k|
|Store layout||More spacious, better lighting||Tighter aisles, stacks of pallets|
As you can see, Target positions itself as a trendier, more upscale mass retailer compared to Walmart. This is reflected in the brands it carries, the prices it sets, and the overall shopping environment.
The data shows Target shoppers tend to be more affluent with higher average household incomes. And the retailer attracts millennials through specialty lines like Hearth & Hand with Magnolia.
Now sometimes big retailers do sell off individual locations…
When Target Sells Specific Stores to Walmart
So while Walmart doesn‘t own Target, I did learn that in rare cases Target has sold some of its real estate to competitors like Walmart:
- When certain locations underperform, Target may opt to sell the property rather than operate at a loss
- For example, Target sold a Tulsa, OK store to Walmart in 2016 after closing it down
- This only involves the physical real estate – not Target‘s brand, IP, or other assets
But these sales are infrequent – less than 1% of Target‘s nearly 2,000 stores have been sold off to Walmart. It doesn‘t impact Target‘s operations overall.
The Bottom Line…
Hope this guide gave you some helpful insights into Target‘s business as an ecommerce seller! To summarize:
Despite similarities as mass retailers, Target and Walmart have no shared ownership
Target Corporation operates independently and owns all Target stores
Target positions itself as a more upscale, trendy shopping destination
While competitors, the two chains have their own distinctive brands and shopper demographics
So next time you browse Target, know that it‘s not affiliated with Walmart. Target marches to the beat of its own drum! And that‘s why as a seller, I keep a close eye on both retail powerhouses.
Let me know if you have any other questions!