CHICAGO – The largest foodservice distribution companies in the US grew and solidified their position at the top of the industry, even through the overall economy languished, according to Technomic's recently released Power Distributor Report: The Top 15 study.

The study defines power distributors as foodservice distribution companies with annual calendar-year sales of $150 million or more. Based on 2010 sales performances, 35 companies were above this threshold.

"The predominance of growth is coming from the top," said Gary Karp, executive vice president. "The power distributors control nearly half of all US foodservice distributor sales. Most of the top 35 companies are broadline distributors, and their growth has come at the expense of other broadliners and specialists."

Other study findings include:

  • The 35 power distributors collectively fared better than the industry as a whole, with a sales increase of 5 percent in 2010.
  • In 2010, nine of the 35 companies achieved double-digit sales increases; leading the gainers was Doerle Food Services, which grew 15 percent, to $292 million.
  • Nine of the power distributors had annual sales of more than $1 billion, while three have passed the $10 billion threshold.