Research

Apple (AAPL)

Description


Computers are still an important part of its mix, but these days music-related products are at the top of Apple's playlist. The company scored a runaway hit with its digital music players (iPod) and online music store (iTunes). Apple's desktop and laptop computers -- all of which feature its OS X operating system -- include its Mac mini, iMac, and MacBook for the consumer and education markets, and more powerful Power Mac and MacBook Pro for high-end consumers and professionals involved in design and publishing. Other products include mobile phones (iPhone), servers (Xserve), wireless networking equipment (Airport), and publishing and multimedia software. Its FileMaker subsidiary makes database software.

Meijer Inc.

Description

Meijer (pronounced "Meyer") is the green giant of retailing in the Midwest. The company operates about 180 combination grocery and general merchandise stores; about half are in Michigan, while the rest are in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio. Its huge stores (which average 200,000 to 250,000 sq. ft. each, or about the size of four regular grocery stores) stock about 120,000 items, including Meijer private-label products. Customers can choose from about 40 departments, including apparel, electronics, hardware, and toys. Most stores also sell gasoline, offer banking services, and have multiple in-store restaurants. Founder Hendrik Meijer opened his first store in 1934; the company is still family owned.