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"The company has grown and now employs 50 more people than last year."

"The company has expanded and now has branches in most major cities."

What is the difference between 'has grown' and 'has expanded' in those sentences?

Do they have the same meaning or not?

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In these sentences the two verbs are completely interchangeable. There is no significant difference.

Elsewhere there would be differences, of course. Animate objects tend to grow and inanimate objects tend to expand, for instance. Even in those usages there are often cases where the two verbs could be swapped.

  • I'd agree they're pretty much interchangeable. In the 2 examples given, I'd say the only possible 'reason' for using each term may be that the first company grew within one building or town, the second has expanded to new territories; but I wouldn't argue over either. – Tetsujin Nov 9 '14 at 17:18

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