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Wholesaling, jobbing, or distributing is defined as the sale of goods or merchandise to retailers, to industrial, commercial, institutional, or other professional business users, or to other wholesalers and related subordinated services.[1] In general, it is the sale of goods to anyone other than a standard consumer.

According to the United Nations Statistics Division, "wholesale" is the resale (sale without transformation) of new and used goods to retailers, to industrial, commercial, institutional or professional users, or to other wholesalers, or involves acting as an agent or broker in buying merchandise for, or selling merchandise to, such persons or companies. Wholesalers frequently physically assemble, sort and grade goods in large lots, break bulk, repack and redistribute in smaller lots.[2] While wholesalers of most products usually operate from independent premises, wholesale marketing for foodstuffs can take place at specific wholesale markets where all traders are congregated.

Traditionally wholesalers were closer to the markets they supplied than the source they got the products.[3]

However, with the advent of the internet and E-procurement there are an increasing number of wholesalers located nearer manufacturing bases in Mainland China, Taiwan and South East Asia like Chinavasion, Ownta, Salehoo and Modbom, many of which offer drop shipping services to companies and individuals.[4]


Often wholesellers are not required to charge their buyers sales tax, though sometimes they may be required to (or may per discretion) charge a special wholesale tax.[5]

See also


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