Walmart is the ultimate big box store. However, it does have some unknown facts that many people do not know. Here are the Top 15 Unknown Facts About Walmart Inc you probably didn’t know about:
Walmart is the world’s largest company.
Sam Walton founded Walmart in 1945 after he bought a Ben Franklin variety store branch in Arkansas. Even Sam Walton could not have imagined how his focus on selling more products at a lower cost would change the future.
The store began to earn some profits after a few setbacks, and Sam Walton was beginning to enjoy real success. After having a small disagreement with his landlord, Sam moved to a new residence.
Walton’s Five and Dime was the name of the new store he opened in the early 1970s. Walmart stores inc was rebranded as Sam Walton’s concept, which had become a huge success. When the company started trading publicly, it employed over 1500 people and saw sales of over 44 million dollars. If you want to check its current price chart, you may read, Walmart Stock Forecast.
By 2020, Walmart will employ over 2 million people worldwide and report revenue of 134 billion dollars, as well as record-breaking profits. It doesn’t look like Walmart will ever lose its title as the largest company in the world.
Walmart’s Business Model Failed in Germany.
As an international retail chain in the 1990s, Walmart expanded to many countries outside the United States.
Foraying into Chinese, UK, and South American markets has proven to be extremely profitable, which led to their entry into German markets. It was a natural progression for Walmart’s corporate team since Germany was Europe’s largest economy.
In the process of expanding into Germany, Walmart encountered a unique problem that ultimately prevented the giant retail chain from becoming an integral part of its society.
Walmart’s American cultural norms were not immediately adopted by German shoppers. The United States, for example, has a custom of having a greeter at the entrance to the local shopping center, which many people enjoy.
The encounter, however, was often viewed as odd or even creepy by German shoppers. Due to a lack of success in attracting German shoppers, Walmart eventually closed all of its stores in the country.
If you want to know about the successful business model of Walmart, you may read, Walmart Business Model.
Walmart’s very first store is now a museum.
Sam Walton would eventually create his brand after acquiring a small branch of an existing retail chain. A company that would become the largest in the world originally called Walton’s Five and Dime.
There is now a museum dedicated to the history of Walmart in the original store. Even though it’s not in the original location where Sam Walton first began his journey. It is still a center of attraction for the die-hard fans of Walmart and collectors of retail history, located in Bentonville, Arkansas.
The museum is a former store of Sam Walton’s and was the first retail location to bear the family name. The only Walmart museum exists today, even though there are thousands of Walmart locations around the world.
One of the largest private satellite networks in the world.
It was a historic year for the mega-retailer in 1987. Since Walmart has already expanded its business to a large area of the country, it needed to share information between stores on sales and stock levels.
Their solution was to build and deploy the largest private satellite network in history. This satellite network was able to communicate both data and voice at the time, costing an impressive 24 million dollars.
Of course, the satellite network has become less important over the years due to the widespread use of cell phones. In the early 90s, Walmart’s satellite network played an important role in logistics, so it is an impressive accomplishment, but most people are unaware of it.
The opening of new Walmart stores destroys local businesses.
Walmart’s goal was to sell as much volume as possible which is how they’re able to keep prices so incredibly low on their wares. In contrast, local Mom and Pop stores do not possess the same amount of inventory as Walmart.
Therefore, they are usually unable to offer the same low prices as their giant new competitor. The prestigious college conducted a study in 1997 finding that opening a Walmart can result in the loss of up to half of a small town’s retail stores.
The natural progression of large-scale retailers leveraging suppliers allows them to offer the cheapest prices. The convenience and value of Walmart may be reason enough to choose them over other stores, but we shouldn’t forget about their quality.
It is about local shops that have been serving their communities for years before Walmart arrived.
Help during a natural disaster
A large number of communities were hit hard by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, but no area was more severely affected than New Orleans. The federal emergency management agency couldn’t help these devastated communities before Walmart intervened.
As one of the first companies to provide relief funds for hurricane-affected areas, Walmart went above and beyond to assist those in need. Along with money, Walmart also delivered 1500 truckloads of merchandise and over hundred thousand meals to Hurricane Katrina victims.
They even promised all their former employees a job with the chain once things got back to normal. The corporate chain worked quickly to provide relief for victims throughout the south, which was greatly appreciated by those who received some assistance from the retailer due to their vast knowledge of supply chains and local routes.
While Walmart is known for crushing local businesses and a few other unsavory stereotypes, it stepped up during natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina to assist those in need.
Electricity is supplied by their own company.
For years, Walmart has cut costs in their operations to lower prices for customers, which allows them to offer lower prices. One of the most interesting ways the chain has accomplished this has been by purchasing an energy company of its own. Walmart acquired Texas Retail Energy to purchase wholesale electricity for its stores. As a result, the company effectively saves around 15 million dollars per year.
A secondary benefit of this acquisition was that Walmart could now sell electricity to its customers. The deregulation of the market can be bad news for the energy companies that now compete with the retail giant. In addition to constantly cutting costs, Walmart is already well known for offering low prices to locals, which may force the other companies out of the energy market.
There is a great deal of respect for employees.
It is a concern that many large corporations may treat their employees as expendable and even violate their rights using their immense power. In 2009, Walmart gave out almost 1 billion dollars worth of cash bonuses to its employees, which is indeed an excellent corporate practice.
It appears that Walmart cares about the well-being of its employees. Aside from cash bonuses, Walmart also offers profit-sharing, employer-matched 401k contributions, and reduced merchandise prices for its employees.
The company spends close to two billion dollars annually on employee incentives, making Walmart one of the most respected and solid places to work in the world.