Estimated to be the 2nd largest retailer in the world behind Walmart, Costco is a membership-only warehouse chain. Costco opened its first warehouse in 1983 in Seattle and has since expanded to offer some 785 warehouses worldwide in 11 countries. In 2001 they launched their website ( which continues to provide access to their extensive range of products. Some items are only available to members while others are available to all.

Grew from a Merger

Costco grew significantly following a merger with Price Club who had stores throughout Southern California. Price Club rejected an offer from Walmart to join Sam’s Club as their business model was different.

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