Is Dollar General Owned By Walmart In 2022?

As an avid deal-seeker and bargain hunter, you may shop at both Dollar General and Walmart to save money on everyday essentials and supplies.

With their convenient locations across America and discount offerings, these two retailers likely compete for your business.

But despite their similar business models, Dollar General and Walmart operate independently, with no ownership ties between the two companies.

Below I’ll explain who actually owns and controls these retail giants after diving into their backgrounds. I’ll also analyze how Dollar General and Walmart differ in their offerings and target demographics.

Let’s start with a quick profile of each company before looking at the ownership structure.

Dollar General at a Glance

Founded in 1939 in Kentucky, Dollar General now operates over 18,000 stores in 47 states, serving millions of Americans each year.

With its convenient neighborhood locations, Dollar General provides shoppers with national brands and private labels at budget-conscious price points. Everything is priced at $10 or less.

Here are some key stats on Dollar General:

  • 18,000+ stores throughout the United States

  • 46 states with Dollar General store locations

  • $27.8 billion in 2021 revenue

  • 1.5 million square feet of distribution center space

  • 30,000+ total employees

Walmart at a Glance

Walmart first opened in 1962 and has since grown to become the world’s largest company by revenue. Its focus is providing all-in-one shopping for consumers’ varied needs.

Let’s look at some key numbers for Walmart:

  • 10,500 Walmart stores in 24 countries

  • $559 billion in 2021 revenue

  • 1.6 million U.S. Walmart associates

  • 265 million customers served weekly

  • 160 million square feet of distribution space

So in summary, while Walmart is much larger in terms of revenue and global presence, both companies aim to provide value-focused consumers like you with affordable prices on everyday purchases through thousands of convenient locations.

Now let’s look at who actually owns these retail giants.

Who Owns Dollar General Stores?

Dollar General operates as an independent public company trading on the NYSE under the ticker DG. It has been this way since its founding over 80 years ago.

The company was started in 1939 by James Luther Turner and Cal Turner in Kentucky. In 2007, Dollar General was acquired by private equity investors for $7.3 billion.

Here is the current breakdown of Dollar General’s major shareholders:

  • Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR): A global private equity firm with a 12.5% ownership stake

  • The Vanguard Group: An investment management firm and the largest institutional shareholder with an 11.8% stake

  • BlackRock Fund Advisors: Asset management fund with 8.5% ownership

  • Goldman Sachs: The investment bank owns 7.4% of Dollar General through their private equity arm

  • Citigroup: Owns a 4.8% stake in Dollar General

In total, institutional ownership makes up 76.36% of shares according to Nasdaq data. The remaining shares are held by individual investors.

But no single entity owns a majority controlling stake in Dollar General. So in summary, Dollar General operates as an independent public company without ownership by Walmart.

What Retailers Does Walmart Own?

Unlike Dollar General, Walmart has used its massive size and scale to purchase ownership stakes in other significant retail chains globally.

Here are the major international retailers that Walmart owns:

  • Asda (UK): Walmart owns 100% of Asda, the UK’s 2nd largest grocer

  • Seiyu (Japan): Walmart has a 65% stake in this major Japanese supermarket chain

  • Flipkart (India): Walmart purchased a 77% controlling stake in Flipkart, India’s largest online retailer, for $16 billion in 2018

  • Bompreço (Latin America): Walmart owns this supermarket chain with locations across Central America and Brazil

Walmart also owns several online brands:

  • Bonobos: Acquired this online men’s apparel brand in 2017 for $310 million

  • ModCloth: Walmart bought this digital women’s fashion retailer in 2017 for between $50-$75 million

So in summary, while Walmart owns major international retailers and ecommerce brands, it does not have any ownership stake or control in Dollar General.

Who Ultimately Controls and Owns Walmart?

You might be wondering who owns Walmart if it’s publicly traded. Here’s the breakdown:

  • The Walton Family: Heirs of Walmart founder Sam Walton control a 51.4% stake in the company through personal entities like Walton Enterprises LLC.

  • Institutional Investors: BlackRock, Vanguard, State Street Global, and other firms own 36.2% of Walmart shares.

  • Individual Investors: The remaining 12.4% of shares are held by retail investors.

So the Walton family maintains majority control over Walmart, even though it trades publicly. The remaining shares are split between Wall Street firms with large ownership stakes and everyday retail investors.

Comparing the Business Models: Dollar General vs. Walmart

Now that we’ve covered the ownership structures, you may be wondering: how exactly do Dollar General and Walmart differ in their offerings and target customers?

While both provide affordable prices, there are some important distinctions:

Dollar General

  • Smaller footprint stores approx. 7,400 square feet

  • Convenient neighborhood locations

  • Focus on consumables like food/snacks and household essentials

  • Target customers: low to fixed income shoppers

  • Average transaction around $12


  • Massive supercenters up to 185,000 square feet

  • One-stop shopping for all consumer needs

  • Huge assortment including fresh groceries, apparel, auto, pharmacy, etc.

  • Targets lower and middle-income mass market

  • Average transaction around $30

So in summary, Dollar General specializes in neighborhood essentials for the most budget-focused shoppers, while Walmart serves as a one-stop destination for lower to middle-income consumers. Both offer value but take different approaches.

The Verdict: No Ownership Between Dollar General and Walmart

After looking closely at the key facts, we can definitively conclude that Dollar General and Walmart operate independently as public companies without any mutual ownership or control.

The major takeaways:

  • Dollar General is owned primarily by private equity investors, not Walmart

  • Walmart owns significant international retailers but no stake in Dollar General

  • The Walton family heirs control a 51% share of Walmart through personal trusts

  • While competing for value-focused shoppers, each company has a distinct business model

So when it comes to Dollar General and Walmart, no need to wonder about any secret ownership ties. They continue to operate autonomously while vying for your shopping dollars using different discount strategies.

I hope this thorough overview helps explain exactly who owns these everyday low-price retailers! Let me know if you have any other questions.

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