Best Buy Co., Inc. is a public company that is the American leader in retailing consumer electronics. It accounts for 19% of the U.S. market, has fifty billion dollars in annual revenues and about 160,000 regular employees (125,000 of them work in the American stores). There are more than 1,500 Best Buy locations in the United States, Canada, Mexico, China, Puerto Rico and some other countries. Its headquarters are located in Richfield, Minnesota.
Best Buy specializes in selling a great variety of assorted consumer electronics, home appliances and related goods, like digital and video cameras, Blu-ray, DVDs, computers and computer software, dryers, washing machines, refrigerators, car stereos, cell phones, video games, etc.
The company’s “ZoomShops”, which are automated retail shops, can be found in more than one hundred malls and airports all over the United States.
Best Buy has several subsidiary companies including Geek Squad, CinemaNow, Pacific Sales, Cowboom, and Magnolia Audio Video. In Canada, Best Buy also works under Future Shop brand. The subsidiaries operate approximately 1,200 stores.
History of Best Buy
The company was founded in 1966 by Richard Schulze and Gary Smoliak, who opened an audio store Sound of Music in West Saint Paul. A bit later they purchased Bergo Company and Kencraft Hi-Fi Company and launched two more stores in Minneapolis and near the University of Minnesota.
In 1969, Sound of Music became a public company, and a year later its annual revenue reached one million dollars.
In 1983, the company changed its name for Best Buy Co., Inc. Since 1985, its shares can be found on New York Stock Exchange. Best Buy earned the first billion dollars in annual revenue in 1992 and continued its expansion to other American states’ markets.
In 2000, Best Buy launched Bestbuy.com, thus entering the market of online retail business.
The first Chinese office of the company was opened in Shanghai in 2003. This was the start of Best Buy’s global expansion.
In 2008, Best Buy opened its shop in Bloomington, Minnesota. It became the company’s 1,000th store. The same year Best Buy locations
appeared in Mexico, Puerto Rico and Turkey. Since 2010, its stores work in the United Kingdom and some other countries of Europe.
Best Buy Today
Now Best Buy is one of the largest American retailers of consumer electronics and other related merchandise. It has about 1.6 billion customers per year: about one billion online and mobile visitors and 600 million in-store ones.
The company owns several famous brands: Geek Squad (computer hardware and software), Insignia (electronic equipment, like GPS devices, home-theaters, HDTVs), Dynex (computer and electronic equipment, like Blu-Ray, webcams, storage media, office supplies), RocketFish (cables, GPS, computer games, goods for cell phones), Init (storage products), Platinus Cases (belt clips and cases for Android and BlackBerry phones), and others.
In May 2012, Richard Schulze, one of the Best Buy’s founders, resigned his position of the chairman of the board. He was replaced by Hatim Tyabji.
Several Facts about Best Buy
Here are some interesting facts about the company:
- Best Buy is a regular sponsor for Minnesota Twins and other baseball teams, Everton F.C. (English Premier League), Vancouver Canucks (National Hockey League), and Chicago Fire (Major League Soccer).
- The company is the eleventh largest internet retailer. It is also ranked the fourth favorite internet retailer that visitors like most of all.
- Best Buy suggests the biggest loyalty program in the USA. It has more than forty million members.
- Each minute while Best Buy’s stores are working, the company collects almost four hundred pounds of consumer electronics according the recycling program.
- In 2011, Best Buy bought almost 120 million kWh (kilowatt-hour) of green power.
In 2001, Discount Store News called the company “Specialty Retailer of the Decade”. Famous Forbes magazine named Best Buy “Company of the Year” (2004) and one of the top ten “America’s Most Generous Corporations”. In 2006, Best Buy became one of the most admired companies, according to Fortune magazine.