Home Depot is a US-based multinational big-box retailer focusing on the home improvement market. It is the largest home improvement retailer in the US and has operations in all Canadian provinces, all Mexican states, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The company employs more than 490,000 individuals and brought in more than $150 billion in revenue for fiscal 2021.
Home Depot was founded in 1978 by five partners with a vision to become the largest home supply superstore. The company got its first financing with the aid of Ken Langone and opened its first two stores in 1979. By 1981 the company was going public with an IPO on the NASDAQ stock exchange that raised a whopping $4.1 million. The company switched its listing to the New York Stock Exchange in 1984 and has been traded there ever since.
1984 also brought the company’s first expansions outside its home territory of Georgia. By the end of the year, there were 19 Home Depots, and by 1989 it was indeed the largest home improvement retailer in the U.S. Not long after, to spur additional growth, the company added a line of product installation services that was very successful. That same year, in 1991, the company began making its first major acquisitions.
By 1995 Home Depot operated 350 stores across the contiguous US. It moved into the Mexican market in 2002 and opened its first landscape supply. In 2008 the company experienced its first decline in business due to the housing market bubble and subsequent economic recession, but the company was able to weather the storm. Growth was back on the table in 2013, and momentum has built since then.
Today, Home Depot operates a network of more than 3,500 stores in North America and adjacent territories. The company lists 35,000 products in-store with another 1 million online. In regard to eCommerce, Home Depot has been a leader in digital sales channels and launched its digital store in 2000, more than a decade ahead of many others in the retail industry. The company’s goal here is to provide a seamless experience between online and physical retail they call The One Home Depot strategy.
Home Depot is also a leader in customer-centric and employee-centric operations. The company’s guiding principle is illustrated by an inverted pyramid with customers at the top and the CEO at the bottom. In between are the front-line associates, field and customer support to make it all work. The company believes its total addressable market is worth $900 billion in annual sales, leaving plenty of room to continue growing. The near-term goal is to top $200 billion in annual sales, which will happen before 2030.
Home Depot’s mascot is Homer D. Poe. Homer D. Poe is a friendly-looking fellow wearing a cap that has been featured in Home Improvement advertising and merchandising materials for over three decades.