The Growth of Walmart
Walmart even as the widest multinational retailer also started with a humble beginning. Its first store was opened in 1962 by Sam Walton in Rogers Arkansas. His store used to be one of the chain of Ben Franklin stores which he bought from the Butler Brothers in 1945. He remodelled, refurnished and named it as Walmart.
Rogers targeted middle-class and lower middle class consumers. He came up with a business scheme where he sold in higher volumes with lower prices. He scouted for lower cost suppliers as well to be able to sell lower. This scheme has been beneficial to clients and also reasonable for the seller. Not long after, because the store was patronized by many, more outlets were opened. In 5 years he was able to open twenty-four branches around the area. Then in 1968, he was able to expand in Missouri, Oklahoma, Claremore and Sikeston. With the fast growth of this company, it was able to achieve a sales totalling to $12.6.
The expansion did not stop there. The operating stores increased to 38 by 1970 employing 1500 staff. This helped a lot in the employment of residences in areas where the stores were opened. By that time, they achieved a sales of $44.2 million. Walmart have become a household name with an easy recognizable brand to average customers.
It then started trading stocks and was listed on the New York Stock Exchange as a publicly held company in 1970. With the increase in capital and sales they again opened more stores all over the United States. In 1974, a store was opened in Kentucky and Mississippi. Texas was the next target afterwards. By that time, they already had 125 stores with 7500 employees and sales of about $340 million. At that moment, there was no stopping Walmart and it started growing in leaps and bumps.
By 1985 the company had 104,000 associates, with 882 stores and total sales of around $8.4 billion. It was able to expand into Wisconsin and Colorado, as well. They were also contemplating in opening the first store in Minnesota during that time. Walmart celebrated its 25th anniversary in 1987 with over 1100 stores and sales of $15.9 billion.
The company founder Sam Walton stepped down as the CEO in February 1988 and David Glass was named to succeed him. Walton still remained as the Board of Directors of the company though. Senior management positions were also restructured by the company promoting a cadre of executives to positions of greater responsibility. In 1988, the company became the most profitable company in the U.S. after expanding their market reach to over 27 states such as Ohio, Michigan, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey and Arizona,
The 1990s was an era of frantic growth on an exceptional scale and the incorporation of several new ideas and technology into the business. Walmart made the big spring entering into the worldwide market by opening stores in Mexico City in 1991 and Canada, and penetrating the international markets in South America in 1995. It entered into Europe by acquiring ASDA for $10 billion. The sales touched 165 billion by the 21st century and $320 billion in 2005 with more than 3800 stores in the United State and over 2800 worldwide
Today, Walmart is the second largest public corporation in the world levelling with other famous companies like Fortune Global 500. As a very accomplished company, it now has a total of 2 million employees working full time or part time. Its headquarters is located in Bentonville, Arkansas.
Walmart has grown to an unimaginable level. It has stores in more than 15 countries under different names. Today, it has a total of 8500 stores that assists millions of people worldwide have a better shopping experience. It has been able to bring in a new market trend which encouraged not even consumers but also sellers to adopt the best practice of prioritizing consumers and profit will follow.