March 17, 2011, 3:08 PM

Grainger approaches $2 billion in annual e-commerce sales

The web accounted for 25% of all sales in 2010.

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Last year was a solid one online for W.W. Grainger Inc.

For the year ended Dec. 31, Grainger, No. 19 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, reported:

  • Web sales increased 31.3% to $1.80 billion from $1.37 billion in 2009.
  • Total sales rose year over year 16.1% to $7.2 billion from $6.2 billion.
  • Net earnings increased 19.2% to $513.6 million from $430.8 million in 2009.

Internet Retailer calculates the web accounted for 25% of total sales compared with 22.1% in 2009.

“E-commerce is really powerful for us,” Grainger chief financial officer Ron Jadin told attendees during a presentation March 8 at the Raymond F. James Institutional Investors Conference in Florida. “It is highly profitable.”

Over the next several years Grainger will invest “tens of millions of dollars” in its e-commerce infrastructure, Jadin told attendees. “We have a great opportunity to make e-commerce even more relevant,” he said.

Grainger doesn’t break out quarterly web sales, but for the fourth quarter reported:

  • Total sales rose year over year 12.5% to $1.8 billion from $1.6 billion.
  • Net earnings increased 36.8% to $133.2 million from $97.4 million in Q4 2009.
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