Wal-Mart Versus Carrefour

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Wal-Mart, the number one retailer in the world, persistently maintain three fundamental beliefs—respect everyone, total-solution service, and in search of highest quality—to shape their unique corporate culture. They insist lowest price every day, carry out total solution services, effectively control the cost of global logistics, fully leverage information technology to become e-company, powerfully motivate employees to work and share knowledge and adopt a play-safe strategy in internationalization. As for the number two player—Carrefour, they provide customers with one-stop shopping, lowest price, fresh products, self-served shopping in a hypermarket with free parking lots. In contrast to Wal-Mart’s internationalization strategy, Carrefour expands to foreign markets faster and more flexible than their counterpart.

Wal-Mart founded by Sam Walton adopted circumventing strategy by starting her operations in small towns and then expanding to bigger cities. She maintains lowest price everyday and promises customer satisfaction together with high quality suppliers’ cooperation and prompt delivery to grow continuously at marked rates. Public offering begun in 1970, Wal-Mart then extended operation around the States and further expanded across borders. She has branches in Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Porto-Rico, UK, Germany, South Korea and Mainland China. Currently, she employs more than 1.3 million staff. In 2001, her sales reached more than 217 billions and won the title of biggest enterprise in the globe.

On the other hand, Carrefour initiated the idea of “hyper-market” in 1959 that stressed mass-sales, low delivery cost and discount everyday to achieve high rotation. Other key success factors include one-stop shopping, low selling price, freshness, self- service and free parking. She started public offering in 1970, acquired 45 shops in Europe in 1991, and merger with Promodes in 1999. At last, she had 9,225 stores and more than 340 thousand employees....
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