Tuesday, October 13, 2009

So just how big is Walmart?

For the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2009, Walmart's worldwide sales topped $401 billion.

That's close to $46 million each and every hour of every day.

That's more than the gross domestic product of Taiwan, Greece and Denmark, and double that of Romania.

Walmart discloses its operating margin at 5.8 per cent, which totals a profit of $44,250 every minute.

Walmart's U.S. sales tops Home Depot, Kroger, Target, Sears, Costco and K-Mart combined.

If Walmart continues to grow at its current rate, revenues will be $3 trillion by 2020, as much as economies of France and Britain combined, and it will employ 8.2 million people.

Walmart is already the biggest private employer in the U.S.

Walmart develops more real estate, consumes more energy than any other American company.

How's this for diversity? Walmart sells more dog food, disposable diapers, guns, toothpaste, CDs and diamonds than any other retailer.

It's estimated that one-third of American shoppers visit Walmart once a week.

In a little over a decade, the retailer went from selling no groceries to being America's No. 1 grocer.

Industry estimates suggest that 70 per cent of merchandise has left the store before Walmart has paid its suppliers for it.

I am fascinated with the website www.howstuffworks.com - here is some more info on Walmart: http://money.howstuffworks.com/wal-mart.htm

Amazing how a company can shape technology, like the introduction of bar codes or the lowering of the cost on a 4 pack of light bulbs nationally. It has been an astounding story with Wal-Mart over the past few decades, as huge manufacturers like GE bow to a retailer. Its a case now where the tail wags the dog. Is Wal-Mart getting TOO BIG?

Here is a great movie (a few years old but still fascinating) if you can find a download copy or it is on TV every now and then.

Here is a great PBS documentary also; watch it online.

Oh, and for us capitalists: Here's the stock performance since Wal-Mart went public in 1970, issuing a paltry 300,000 shares.

In 1971 if you invested just $5,000 dollars in Wal-Mart stock, you would have over $10,000,000 (yeah, ten million) in your jeans today. I guess not everyone hates Wal-Mart!