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Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is the comprehensive assessment of all expenses associated with owning and operating a particular asset or system throughout its entire lifecycle.

In the retail context, TCO encompasses not only the initial purchase cost of merchandise but also factors in ongoing expenses such as maintenance, repairs, upgrades, storage, transportation, and disposal.

It takes into account direct costs, such as product acquisition and operational costs, as well as indirect costs like downtime, obsolescence, and lost sales opportunities.