Sales at W.W. Grainger Inc.’s full-service and web-only businesses drove the industrial products distributor’s total 2022 sales up 16.9% year over year to $15.2 billion, chairman and CEO DG Macpherson said today.
For the fourth quarter, total sales increased 13.2% year over year to $3.8 billion. Grainger, a prominent distributor of maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) products, didn’t break out total ecommerce sales for the full year or Q4. But it has said in in prior financial reporting that more than 75% of orders originate through Grainger’s digital channels.
Zoro surpasses $1 billion in annual sales
But Macpherson said in an earnings call that web-only sales in its Endless Assortment segment, including Zoro.com in the United States and Japan-based MonotaRo.com, increased 0.9% year over year to $670 million; adjusting for depreciation of the Japanese yen, Endless Assortment sales rose 16.8% in constant currency.
In addition, Deidra Merriwether, chief financial officer, noted that Zoro’s 2022 sales surpassed $1 billion for the first time in a 12-month period. Grainger says Zoro and MonotaRo cater to smaller companies with less complex needs compared with the larger customers served by Grainger’s High-Touch Solutions segment, which includes the flagship Grainger.com and Grainger’s sales team.
Grainger also said Zoro ended the year with 4.57 million registered users. That’s up 17% from 3.92 million a year earlier. At the same time, Zoro increased its number of SKUs 28% to 11.1 million. Zoro is on course to add about 2 million SKUs annually over the next several years, Grainger said.
Grainger said Q4 High-Touch Solutions sales increased 16.8% to $3.07 billion, as the segment’s operating earnings rose 32.9% to $477 million.
In 2023, Merriwether said, Grainger expects ongoing revenue growth to more than $16 billion will support significant investments in technology and services. The company expects to generate 2023 cash flow from $1.45 billion to $1.65 billion. That’s an increase of over $215 million by mid-year compared with 2022. It plans 2023 capital spending within range of $450-$525 million, investing in its distribution center network, customer experience, and product information technology.
In addition, Grainger will invest this year in “our environmental, social and governance objectives internally and supporting our customers to help them achieve their own ESG goals,” Merriwether said.
Zoro executive to speak at EnvisionB2B 2023
Mattinson will discuss how the distributor anticipates dynamic change in digital commerce, executes a flexible and winning ecommerce strategy, and how other organizations can do the same.
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