On May 9, 1950, Sam Walton opened up Walton's 5&10 in Bentonville, Arkansas. The first store with the Wal-Mart name was opened in 1962 in Rogers, AR, financed 95% by Sam Walton himself.
The corporate headquarters of the world's largest retail company, Wal-Mart, are located in Bentonville, AR, where founder Sam Walton started it all.
The Mission Statement and Purpose of Wal-Mart (WMT)
Wal-Mart's advertised mission statement and its advertising slogan are the same:
"We save people money so they can live better."
In addition to this mission statement, the company looks to its founder, Sam Walton for a company "purpose":
“If we work together, we’ll lower the cost of living for everyone…we’ll give the world an opportunity to see what it’s like to save and have a better life.”
In order to fulfill its mission, Wal-Mart has developed some unique, policies, principles, rules, processes and procedures, the sum total of which form the Wal-Mart stores corporate culture: Open Door Policy - Managers' doors are open to employees at all levels Sundown Rule - Answering employee, customer, and supplier questions on the same day the questions are received Grass Roots Process - Capturing suggestions and ideas from the sales floor and front lines 3 Basic Beliefs & Values - Respect for the Individual, Service to our Customers, Striving for Excellence 10-Foot Rule - Making eye contact, greeting, and offering help to customers who come within 10 feet Servant Leadership - Leaders are in service to their team
Wal-Mart Cheer - An actual structured chant that was created by founder Sam Walton to lift morale every morning
For the fiscal year ending January 31, 2009, Wal-Mart reported a net income of $13.6 billion on $404 billion of revenue(3.4% profit margin). For the fiscal year ending January 31, 2006, Wal-Mart's international operations accounted for about 20.1% of total sales.
In North America, Wal-Mart's primary competition includes department stores like Kmart, Target, ShopKo and Meijer, Canada's Zellers, Hart the Real Canadian Superstore and Giant Tiger, and Mexico's Comercial Mexicana and Soriana. Competitors of Wal-Mart's Sam's Club division are Costco, and the smaller BJ's Wholesale Club chain operating mainly in the eastern US. Wal-Mart's move into the grocery business in the late 1990s also set it against major supermarket chains in both the United States and Canada. Several smaller retailers, primarily dollar stores, such as Family Dollar and Dollar General, have been able to find a small niche market and compete successfully against Wal-Mart for home consumer sales.In 2004, Wal-Mart responded by testing its own dollar store concept, a subsection of some stores called "Pennies-n-Cents. Wal-Mart also had to face fierce competition in some foreign markets. For example, in Germany it had captured just 2% of German food market following its entry into the market in 1997 and remained "a secondary player" behind Aldi with a 19% share.In July 2006, Wal-Mart announced its withdrawal from Germany. Its stores were sold to German company Metro. Wal-Mart continues to do well in the UK, and its Asda subsidiary is the second largest chain after Tesco. In May 2006, after entering the South Korean market in 1998, Wal-Mart withdrew and sold all 16 of its South Korean outlets to Shinsegae, a local retailer, for $882 million. Shinsegae re-branded the Wal-Marts as E-mart stores. Wal-Mart struggled to export its brand elsewhere as it rigidly tried to reproduce its model overseas. In China, Wal-Mart hopes to succeed by adapting and doing things preferable to Chinese citizens. For example, it found that Chinese consumers preferred to select their own live fish and seafood; stores began displaying the meat uncovered and installed fish tanks, leading to higher sales
Arguably, Walmart has done more than any...