Wal-Mart at 50: A Not-So-Short History Of the World's Largest Retailer

by Eric Francis  on Monday, Jul. 2, 2012 12:00 am  


• In the fiscal year that ends Jan. 31, Wal-Mart’s 24 stores produce sales of $12.6 million and net income of almost $482,000, or 9 cents per share.


• Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is incorporated on Oct. 31.

• Total sales reach $30.8 million for 32 stores, with the company adding, on average, two new stores per year.

• Wal-Mart completes construction of a 72,000-SF headquarters building in Bentonville and opens it in early 1970. Like everything else tied to the company, it is done with the bottom line in mind. Nothing fancy — not even carpeting, which Sam Walton thinks is a waste of money.


• The company opens its first dedicated distribution center in Bentonville.

• On Oct. 1, Wal-Mart “goes public” with a small initial public offering of 300,000 shares priced at $16.50 per share.


• Total sales for the fiscal year that ends in January top $44 million, triple the level of just three years earlier.

• ”I had no vision of the scope of what I would start, but I always had confidence that as long as we did our work well, and were good to our customers, there would be no limits to us.” — Sam Walton in a letter to Wal-Mart associates.



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