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H-E-B bags a top spot on Forbes’ list of America’s largest private companies

H-E-B bags a top spot on Forbes’ list of largest private companies

H-E-B exterior
H-E-B gets more national recognition.  Photo courtesy of H-E-B

H-E-B holds a special place in the hearts of Texas grocery shoppers. It also holds a special place among the country’s privately owned companies.

San Antonio-based H-E-B ranks fifth on Forbes’ new list of the country’s largest privately owned companies based on annual revenue. According to Forbes, the grocery chain’s annual revenue is $32.8 billion, making it the largest private company in Texas. On its website, H-E-B reports annual sales of $32 billion.

Meanwhile, trade publication Progressive Grocer lists H-E-B’s 2020 revenue at $36.8 billion, which puts it in 13th place among North America’s largest grocery retailers. And trade publication Supermarket News pegs H-E-B’s 2020-21 revenue at nearly $31.8 billion, which gives it the No. 15 ranking among the biggest food and grocery retailers in the U.S. and Canada.

H-E-B’s financial success can be tied in large part to its popularity among Texas grocery shoppers.

This year, Amazon knocked H-E-B off its No. 1 perch as America’s best grocery retailer in a survey by market research company Dunnhumby. H-E-B fell to No. 2 this year. H-E-B had grabbed the top spot from Trader Joe’s in Dunnhumby’s 2020 survey.

Trade publication Grocery Dive noted that H-E-B’s No. 1 ranking in last year’s Dunnhumby survey reflected the chain’s “efforts to cultivate a strong customer base among Texans with customer service, local products, and unique experiences in each store.”

Though no Austin-based companies made the Forbes list, one featured biz, New Jersey-based IT company SHI International Corp., has a strong connection to the Capital City. Austin billionaire Thai Lee, with a net worth estimated at $4.1 billion, is co-founder, president, and CEO of SHI. The company ranks 28th on the Forbes list, with annual revenue of $11.1 billion.

In addition to H-E-B, the only other San Antonio company on the Forbes list is construction engineering company Zachry Group. It ranks 225th, with annual revenue of $2 billion.

Nearly all of the other Texas companies in the Forbes ranking are based in the Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston areas. Thirteen DFW companies and five Houston companies show up on the list.

Dallas-Fort Worth

  • Grand Prairie-based alcohol and wine distributor Republic National Distributing, No. 25, $11.9 billion in annual revenue.
  • Dallas-based conglomerate Sammons Enterprises, No. 70, $5.8 billion in annual revenue.
  • McKinney-based roofing distributor SRS Distribution, No. 80, $5.4 billion in annual revenue.
  • Irving-based arts-and-crafts retailer Michaels, No. 81, $5.3 billion in annual revenue.
  • Dallas-based luxury retailer Neiman Marcus, No. 101, $4.7 billion in annual revenue.
  • Irving-based electrical systems and equipment maker Consolidated Electrical Distributors, No. 103, $4.6 billion in annual revenue.
  • Fort Worth-based food and beverage distributor Ben E. Keith, No. 107, $4.2 billion in annual revenue.
  • Dallas-based oil and gas explorer Hunt Consolidated, No. 113, $4 billion in annual revenue.
  • Frisco-based transportation and logistics software provider Transplace, No. 127, $3.6 billion in annual revenue.
  • Addison-based cosmetics retailer Mary Kay, No. 164, $2.8 billion in annual revenue.
  • Plano-based senior healthcare provider Golden Living, No. 178, $2.6 billion in annual revenue.
  • Dallas-based general contractor Austin Industries, No. 217, $2.1 billion in annual revenue.
  • Dallas-based transportation and logistics company Mode Transportation, No. 220, $2.1 billion in annual revenue.

Houston

  • Car dealership group Gulf States Toyota, No. 45, $8.3 billion in annual revenue.
  • Energy company Calpine, No. 48, $8 billion in annual revenue.
  • Petroleum and petrochemical products marketer Tauber Oil, No. 61, $6.7 billion in annual revenue.
  • Casino, restaurant, and sports conglomerate Fertitta Entertainment, No. 166, $2.8 billion in annual revenue.
  • BMC Software, No. 219, $2.1 billion in annual revenue.