Walmart is an American retail company founded in 1962 by Sam Walton. Today it is the largest retailer in the world with over 11,000 stores worldwide and revenues of more than $559 billion (as of 2021).
It employs 2.2 million people globally at its subsidiaries which include Asda Stores Ltd., Walmart Canada, Sam’s Club, Walmart International, and Wal-Mart Supercenters.
The company was incorporated on October 31, 1969, but the first Walmart was opened in 1962 in Rogers, Arkansas.
Sam Walton opened the first Walmart Discount City in 1962. The store was located on the outskirts of Rogers, Arkansas where he grew up.
Just after a year, his company acquired another chain by purchasing Ben Franklin Stores for $30 million to expand its operations.
Then came the acquisition of several stores including Handy Dan and Jordan Marsh in 1967 and Oshman’s in 1969.
In the 1970s, Walmart began to open several stores outside Arkansas including its first California store at Lancaster and Sierra Highway in Ontario, California.
In 1972, Sam Walton opened his dream “Walmart Discount City” which is now known as Walmart Supercenter with 50,000 square feet of retail space.
Walmart continued to grow in the 1980s and opened stores outside the United States. It entered Mexico by acquiring Jumex, a leading superstore chain in 1982.
Walmart Canada followed suit by opening its first store at St. Albert, Alberta in 1988 after purchasing 175 Woolco stores from the F. W. Woolworth Company for $225 million in cash and stock.
The 1990s marked a period of expansion that saw Walmart opening several retail outlets all over the world including Japan, South Korea, Germany, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, China, and India among others.
In 1998, Walmart expanded its operations by acquiring the largest supermarket chain in the United Kingdom, Asda.
In 2002, it acquired a controlling stake in Massmart Holdings Ltd., a leading South African retailer, and wholesaler of consumer goods.
In 2005, Walmart Stores Inc. purchased another discount store chain named “Tower Records” for $160 million. It was renamed “Walmart Entertainment” and later closed down in 2006.
Later that year, Walmart began to sell online with the launch of walmart.com and acquired an online apparel retailer named “Jane.”
The slogan of Walmart is “Save Money. Live Better” which was introduced in May 2008.
The slogan was developed by the Walmart Marketing department in response to an internal branding initiative called “Project Impact.”
The project was designed to re-establish the customer’s trust and confidence in Walmart after several scandals that rocked its image.