Walmart Inc. is the world`s largest public corporation by revenue that started small, with a single discount store and the simple business idea of selling more for less and earn profits through volume, has grown over the last 50 years into the largest chain of retailers and department stores in the world. Nearly 230 million customers and members will be visiting more than 11,735 Walmart stores under 63 banners in 28 countries each week and it`s the largest private employer in the world having 2,300,000 employees.
In the United States, Walmart operates a variety of stores including discount, Supercenter, Sam’s Club, Neighborhood Market, Marketside, and Pharmacy. In the United States, there are a total of 4,761 Walmart stores and 90 percent of the population resides within 10 miles of a Walmart store (Walmart, 2018). Walmart gained popularity around the world with its broad assortment of products available under one roof, Customer price sensitivity, and convenient locations. Since Walmart’s inception, low retail prices have been its primary strategy to ensure that customers save considerable amount of money which serves their widely advertised mission statement to save people money so they can live better.
HistoryThe history of Walmart began in 1950 when businessman and founder Sam Walton purchased an American discount store chain from Luther E. Harrison in Bentonville, Arkansas. On July 2, 1962, Sam Walton opens the first Walmart store in Rogers, Arkansas with his brother. By 1967, the brothers owned 24 stores, ringing up $12.7 million in sales and officially incorporated company as Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. in 1969. The 1970s held many milestones for Walmart. After a decade of growth, Walmart became publicly traded company where the first stock is sold at $16.50 per share and goes national in 1970. Sam Walton implemented his warehouse distribution strategy by building a warehouse to start their first distribution center and Home Office open in Bentonville, Arkansas. By the end of 1972, Walmart recorded the sales of $ 78 million and listed on the New York Stock Exchange (WMT). With 51 stores. In 1977, Walmart bought 16 Mohr-Value stores in Missouri and Illinois and it’s the first significant acquisition. In 1978, Walmart began operating its own pharmacy, auto service center, and jewelry divisions (Walmart, 2018).In 1980, Walmart reached $1 billion in annual sales and became fastest company to reach with 276 stores and employs 21,000 associates in 11 states. In 1983, Walmart opened its first three Sam’s Wholesale Clubs and began its expansion into bigger city markets and started using computerized point-of-sale systems to enable fast and accurate checkout. The company installed the largest private satellite communication system in the U.S., linking the company’s operations through voice, data and video communication in 1987. Change in leadership occurred in 1988 as David Glass becomes the CEO and the first Walmart supercenter is opened in Washington to provide one-stop shopping experience( Walmart, 2018). By 1990, Walmart is the American Number one retailer. As the Walmart Supercenter redefines convenience and one-stop shopping, Everyday Low Prices goes international through a joint venture with a Mexican retail company called Cifra, and opens its first Sam`s club in Mexico City. In 1993, Walmart celebrates its first $1 billion sales week and expands into Canada by acquiring 122 Woolco stores in 1994. In 1996 Walmart started its operation by opening a store in China and the following year the company celebrated its first $100 billion sales year. In 1998, entered into United Kingdom with the acquisition of Asda and introduced three Neighborhood markets in Arkansas (Walmart, 2018).Walmart started its millennium with change in leadership, as H. Lee Scott, Jr. succeeds David Glass as CEO and founded Walmart.com. In 2002, Walmart tops the Fortune 500 ranking of America`s largest companies and employs 1.1 million associates in 3989 stores worldwide and enters into Japanese Market. In 2005, Walmart makes a major commitment to environment sustainability to create zero waste, use renewable energy only and sell products that sustain people and the environment. In 2007, Walmart.com launches its Site to Store service which enabled customers to buy online and pick up at stores. Mike Duke becomes CEO in 2009. Walmart records $400 billion annual sales for the first time and entered into Chile. In 2010, Walmart entered into India with a joint venture and committed $2 billion to help hunger in United States by the end of 2015. Expanded its sustainable goal for a sustainable agriculture aiming to strengthen the local farmers and economies while focusing more on organic food (Walmart, 2018).Walmart always enter into new countries either by acquisitions or joint ventures. In 2011, Walmart acquired 51 percent of Massmart Holdings limited of South Africa to expand into South Africa and surpasses ten thousand units around the world. In 2013, a way of giving back to the community Walmart U.S. announced it will hire any honorably discharged veteran within their first year off active duty. Doug McMillon succeeds Mike Duke as CEO in 2015.Walmart employs 2.3 million associates worldwide and serves more than 200 million customers each week at more than 11,000 stores in 27 countries. The criticism for employee wages and benefits caused first ever prolonged strike in Walmart history. Walmart announced a $2.7 billion investment over two years in its U.S. workforce, including raising its minimum wage to $9 an hour, implementing new training programs, and giving associates more control over their schedules. In 2016, Walmart pay has been introduced and later merged jet.com to expand the ecommerce segment and to holds its position as world largest retailer. In 2018, changed its legal name from Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. to Walmart Inc. (Walmart, 2018).