Walmart Research Paper

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I have chosen Wal-Mart Stores Inc for my final paper topic selection they are also known as WMT on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) . I am intrigued with their success but also scared about how dependant I have become with my shopping at their stores. This store is not only a retail giant it is also retail bully that forces other stores to go out of business. Wal-Mart not only specializes in retail items such as clothing, jewelry, lawn, and garden they also have super stores that specialize in pharmacy, groceries, auto repair, and check cashing in addition to the services mentioned above. The only other store that has similar retail items and services is Super K Mart which has seriously declined in retail status over the past 10 years. Wal-Mart offers many services and has found a way not only to be competitive but to be dominate when it comes to cost savings. Their product lines are name brand in most cases and are offered at below retail prices on a regular basis which most stores in their competition range can't compete with. These stores are easily accessible in rural and urban city settings, Wal-Mart has 8,970 stores across the world. This global giant is currently the biggest private employer across the world employing over 2 million people world wide and still growing. This store has a great impact on the US economy it helps boost US consumer spending habits and helps the employment rate. I can’t think of another privately owned company that has this big of an impact on the economy. There are a lot complaints about the low pay rates the company offers to its employees but Wal-Mart is offering jobs when other industries and companies are laying off and putting hiring freezes on new positions. These job opportunities may not pay well but it’s most definitely an alternative to being unemployed with no income. Overall Wal-Mart is a solid company that has a broad business portfolio in investments, social responsibility, and ethics which for the most part Wal-Mart has been true to it’s company mission purpose Sam Walton said it best, “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.” # History

Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton was born March 29, 1918 in Kingfisher, Okla. just before the Great Depression. In 1940 Mr. Walton graduated from the University of Missouri with a business degree. Mr. Walton started out working for the retail department store JC Penney in Des Moines, Iowa, as a $75 a month trainee. From 1942 to 1945 Mr. Walton served in the Army, supervising security at aircraft plants and POW camps. On September 1, 1945 Mr. Walton borrowed $20,000 from his father-in-law at the age of 27 Mr. Walton purchased his first franchise, a Ben Franklin variety store in Newport, Arkansas. In four years he turned this negative profiting store into the number one Ben Franklin franchise in the state. Walton kept a competitive advantage by surveying rival stores to assess their pricing and display strategies. He also began negotiating directly with manufacturers for goods, rather than following the existing pricing structures set by Butler Brothers the parent company of Ben Franklin. In 1949, Walton lost the lease on his store in Newport, Arkansas. He wanted to buy a department store in St. Louis, but his wife Helen insisted that she wanted to live in a small town, a decision that would later have an impact on Wal-Mart's growth strategy targeting small town communities that were an untapped market for discount retailers. In 1951 Walton ran the Walton 5 and 10 as a Ben Franklin franchise. Two years later he opened a second store in nearby Fayetteville, Arkansas by 1962, he was the largest Ben Franklin franchise owner in the U.S., with 16 stores in Arkansas, Kansas, and Missouri. Walton's experience with the Ben Franklin stores made him realize that there was an opportunity for discount stores that promise consistently low...
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