The law of large numbers doesn't always apply on Wall Street. In its financial context, the law of large numbers dictates that a mammoth-sized company can't keep growing rapidly forever. It's hard for a widely recognized household brand or a mature retailer that has exhausted its expansion space to grow at the same percentage clip that it used to in its prime.
However, there are plenty of big companies that are still coming through with surprisingly robust growth. Let's go over a few consumer-facing titans generating at least $1 billion in quarterly revenue that are still posting double-digit growth, with year-over-year revenue growth rates provided by S&P Capital IQ.
Michael Kors (NYSE:CPRI): 49% revenue growth over the past year
There's big money to be made in high-end handbags. Kors has become the top dog in luxury handbags with brisk retail expansion and strong store-level comps fueling headier gains than one would expect from premium accessories.
The baton was passed this past quarter as Kors' $1.06 billion in revenue topped the $1.04 billion served up by once larger rival Coach during the same period.
Concerns about contracting margins in this competitive marketplace have kept shares of Kors in check this year, but reality paints a more impressive portrait. Kors saw revenue and earnings climb 43% and 42%, respectively, in its latest quarter.
Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN): 22% revenue growth over the past year
It's certainly true that growth is decelerating at the leading online retailer. Since peaking at 41% top-line growth in 2011 we've seen sales at Amazon slow to a 27% pop in 2012, 22% pack in 2013, and analysts see a 20% uptick in 2014. Seeing a growth rate cut in half in three years isn't encouraging, but on an absolute basis it's hard to dismiss a retailer as large as Amazon growth at a 22% rate over the past year.
Amazon has topped $85 billion in net sales over the past four quarters. Its market cap tops $150 billion. This is a big company that's making the most of its "prime" position as the online retailer of choice.
Nike (NYSE:NKE): 12% revenue growth over the past year
Like a marathon runner in the home stretch, Nike is starting to pick up the pace. The athletic footwear leader saw its revenue climb 9% in fiscal 2013 before bumping up to a 10% pace in fiscal 2014. Nike then went on to kick off fiscal 2015 with a 15% top-line advance.
Nike's sharing the wealth. On Thursday it announced that it would be increasing its dividend by 17%. Nike has now come through with payout boosts in 13 consecutive years.
Sirius XM Holdings, (NASDAQ:SIRI): 11% revenue growth over the past year
Broadcast radio doesn't seem like a thriving industry, but there's some real growth to be had in premium audio. Sirius XM has a monopoly on satellite radio since the 2008 combination of Sirius and XM in a merger of equals.
Sirius XM's path to low double-digit growth is the handiwork of an expanding subscriber base and folks willing to pay more for compelling content and dozens of stations offering commercial-free music. Most cars now roll into showrooms with factory-installed receivers, giving Sirius XM more room to grow as drivers trade in their older vehicles.
Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX): 10% revenue growth over the past year
The coffee bean counters at Starbucks are still running at a caffeinated pace. The java giant closed out fiscal 2014 in fine fashion. Opening 1,599 stores worldwide during the year and posting a 5% spike in comps combined to deliver double-digit top-line growth.
Starbucks may argue that it's just getting started. It's targeting a 16% to 18% gain in revenue in its new fiscal year, but that includes $1 billion in incremental revenue from the planned acquisition of its Japanese operations. Either way Starbucks is still growing quickly for an iconic retail brand that poured out nearly $16.5 billion in revenue in fiscal 2014. A venti-sized company can still deliver venti-sized growth.