15. Dollar General Corporation (NYSE:DG)
> Workforce: 113,400
> Annual revenue: $20.37 billion
> CEO: Todd J. Vasos
> CEO compensation: $8.72 million
Dollar General is one of several discount retailers on this list. Unlike Wal-Mart, Dollar General stores tend to be smaller, described by the company as small-box locations. They are also numerous with roughly 12,600 stores in almost every state. The vast majority of these stores are in communities that have fewer than 20,000 residents. The company’s core customers, according to its most recent financial report, are low and fixed income households. But to keep prices low, the retailer must also keep its costs down. One way it is doing so appears to be paying some of the nation’s lowest wages.
14. Kohl’s (NYSE:KSS)
> Workforce: 140,000
> Annual revenue: $19.20 billion
> CEO: Kevin Mansell
> CEO compensation: $8.19 million
Department store chain Kohl’s announced in February it will close 18 locations this year, the first time in the company’s history. At the time of the announcement, CEO Kevin Mansell told analysts that the weak comparable sales were partially the consequence of growing store payroll. Mansell is paid more than $8 million annually. According to a 2014 EPI paper, CEO pay and company profits in the United States have risen dramatically in recent decades, even during the financial crisis.
13. The Gap, Inc. (NYSE:GPS)
> Workforce: 141,000
> Annual revenue: $15.80 billion
> CEO: Arthur Peck
> CEO compensation: $6.14 million
The Gap, Inc., the holding company controlling the Gap, Banana Republic, and Old Navy brands, is one of the largest companies in the apparel retail industry, which itself is one of the nation’s lowest-paying industries. While CEO Arthur Peck is paid more than $6 million annually, thousands of Gap employees are paid minimum wage. In 2014, Gap raised the hourly wage of 65,000 workers to $10. While the raise was certainly helpful for workers, $10 per hour is still less than half the average hourly wage across all occupations and does not help push Gap off the list of America’s lowest paying companies.