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20 Surprising Facts You Didn't Know About Walmart


Walmart is one of the largest retail corporations in the world. With its humble beginnings in 1962, the company has grown to own approximately 11,700 stores and operates under 59 different names in 28 different countries.

It is a household name that almost everyone is familiar with, but there are still many things that people don't know about this retail giant.

In this article, we will explore 20 fun facts that you didn't know about Walmart. From the company's history to its current operations, we will take a closer look at what makes Walmart the retail giant that it is today. Whether you're a Walmart shopper or not, these facts are sure to surprise and intrigue you.

History of Walmart

Walmart was founded in 1962 by Sam Walton in Rogers, Arkansas. The first Walmart store was opened on July 2, 1962, and it was called Walmart Discount City. The store was located at 719 W. Walnut Street in Rogers, Arkansas. The store was a success, and it helped Sam Walton to open more stores in other locations.

By 1970, Walmart had opened 38 stores in Arkansas and had sales of $44.2 million. In 1972, Walmart became a publicly traded company, and its stock was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The company continued to grow, and by 1980, it had 276 stores and sales of $1.2 billion.

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Walmart continued to expand, opening stores in new locations and acquiring other retail chains. In 1983, Walmart opened its first Sam's Club store, which was a warehouse club that offered bulk items at discounted prices. In 1991, Walmart opened its first international store in Mexico City, Mexico.

Today, Walmart is the largest retailer in the world, with over 11,000 stores in 27 countries. The company employs over 2.2 million people worldwide and has annual revenues of over $500 billion. Walmart is also known for its commitment to sustainability and has set ambitious goals to reduce its carbon footprint and increase the use of renewable energy.

Walmart's Impact on Local Communities

Walmart is a retail giant that has a significant impact on local communities. The company has more than 2 million associates who are residents, neighbors, friends, and family in thousands of communities around the globe. Walmart works to strengthen these communities through both its retail business and community giving.

However, Walmart's impact on local communities is a topic of debate. Some argue that Walmart's presence can crush local retail, especially small "mom and pop" stores. On the other hand, others suggest that Walmart can bring economic benefits to a community, such as creating jobs and lowering prices for consumers.

According to a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Walmart's impact on local communities is not as negative as some may believe. The report found that firm growth, employment, and total earnings were somewhat stronger in Walmart counties and, in some cases, even in the retail sector.

Despite this, Walmart has faced criticism for its treatment of employees and the impact on local wages. Some argue that Walmart's low wages and benefits can harm local economies and contribute to income inequality. On the other hand, Walmart argues that it provides jobs and opportunities for people who may not have other options.

Overall, Walmart's impact on local communities is complex and multifaceted. While the company can bring economic benefits, it can also have negative effects on small businesses and local wages.

Walmart's Supply Chain

Walmart has one of the largest and most complex supply chains in the world. The company's supply chain is a key component of its success, allowing it to efficiently and effectively move products from suppliers to stores and ultimately to customers.

Walmart runs its own distribution centers and partners with logistics companies like ShipBob to further expand its supply chain network. The company's nuanced supply chain establishes a more direct relationship between vendors and end consumers. Walmart's supply chain strategy is focused on efficiency, visibility, and sustainability.

One of the ways Walmart has improved its supply chain is by investing in technology. The company uses sophisticated algorithms and data analytics to optimize its supply chain operations. For example, Walmart uses predictive analytics to forecast demand and adjust inventory levels accordingly. The company also uses RFID technology to track inventory in real-time, which helps reduce waste and improve efficiency. In addition to technology, Walmart has also focused on improving its transportation network. The company has a fleet of trucks and trains that transport products from suppliers to distribution centers and stores. Walmart has also experimented with new transportation technologies, such as autonomous trucks and drones, to further improve its supply chain. Overall, Walmart's supply chain is a complex and sophisticated system that plays a critical role in the company's success. By investing in technology and transportation, Walmart has been able to improve efficiency, visibility, and sustainability, which has helped the company maintain its position as one of the world's largest retailers.

Walmart's Employee Policies

Walmart is known for its size and scale, but it is also known for its employee policies. The company has a reputation for being tough on employees, but the reality is more complex. Walmart has a number of policies in place to ensure that its employees are treated fairly and that they have the opportunity to succeed.

One of the key policies at Walmart is its commitment to diversity and inclusion. The company has a number of programs in place to ensure that all employees are treated fairly, regardless of their race, gender, or sexual orientation. Walmart has also been recognized for its commitment to hiring veterans, with the company pledging to hire 250,000 veterans by 2020.

Another important policy at Walmart is its commitment to employee training and development. The company offers a range of training programs to help employees develop their skills and advance their careers. Walmart also has a tuition assistance program, which allows employees to earn college degrees while working at the company.

Walmart is also known for its strict attendance policies. The company has a point system in place, and employees can be terminated if they accumulate too many points for absences or tardiness. While this policy has been controversial, Walmart argues that it is necessary to ensure that stores are staffed adequately and that customers are served effectively.

Finally, Walmart has a number of policies in place to ensure that employees are safe while on the job. The company has a comprehensive safety program, which includes training, safety equipment, and regular safety inspections. Walmart also has a zero-tolerance policy for workplace violence, and the company takes all reports of violence seriously.

Walmart's Environmental Impact

Walmart, one of the largest retailers in the world, has recognized the importance of sustainability and has taken significant steps to reduce its environmental impact. In 2005, Walmart unveiled a plan to reduce its environmental impact, which included cutting down on waste production, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and boosting energy efficiency.

One of the most significant steps Walmart has taken to reduce its environmental impact is its commitment to achieving zero carbon emissions by 2040. To achieve this goal, Walmart plans to use 100% renewable energy by 2035, as well as using electric vehicles and other low-carbon technologies. Walmart's efforts to reduce carbon emissions are not limited to its own operations, as the company is also working with its suppliers to reduce their environmental impact.

Walmart has also made significant progress in reducing waste. The company has set a goal to achieve zero waste in its operations in Canada, Japan, the UK, and the US by 2025. To achieve this goal, Walmart is working to reduce the amount of waste it generates, increase recycling rates, and find new uses for waste materials. In addition, Walmart has committed to using 100% recyclable, reusable, or compostable packaging for its private label brands by 2025.

Another area where Walmart has made significant progress is in reducing its energy consumption. Walmart has set a goal to reduce its energy intensity by 20% by 2025, compared to its 2010 baseline. To achieve this goal, Walmart is implementing energy-efficient technologies in its stores and distribution centers, such as LED lighting and high-efficiency HVAC systems. Walmart is also working to reduce its water consumption, with a goal to reduce water intensity by 20% by 2025.

Walmart's Philanthropic Efforts

Walmart is committed to giving back to the community and supporting programs that align with their philanthropic priorities. In 2022, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation provided over $1.5 billion in cash and in-kind donations to support various initiatives.

Through their philanthropic investments, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation aim to systematically address some of the biggest economic, environmental, and social challenges faced in the world today. They work closely with their grantees to address large scale environmental and social challenges in priority areas such as:

  • Climate Change
  • Equity and Inclusion
  • Health and Wellness
  • Workforce Development
  • Disaster Relief and Resiliency

Walmart's philanthropic efforts are not limited to just donations. They also work on various initiatives such as:

  • Reducing waste and increasing sustainability in their operations
  • Providing opportunities for small and diverse businesses
  • Supporting education and training programs for their associates
  • Collaborating with other organizations to address societal issues

Walmart also encourages its associates to give back to their communities through their Volunteerism Always Pays (VAP) program. The program rewards associates who volunteer their time and skills with grants to the organizations they support.

Overall, Walmart's philanthropic efforts demonstrate their commitment to making a positive impact on society and the environment. By working with their grantees and collaborating with other organizations, Walmart is able to address some of the biggest challenges facing the world today.

Walmart's Global Presence

Walmart is a retail giant that operates in 24 countries around the world. The company sources its products from more than 100 countries, each with its own unique cultural, economic, social, and political institutions and practices. Walmart is a company of full-time and part-time associates from a variety of ethnicities, orientations, backgrounds, and life experiences.

Walmart's global presence has made it one of the largest employers in the world. The company has about 2.3 million employees, making it the largest privately-employed workforce in the world. Walmart's success has also made it the world's biggest family-owned business.

Walmart's international operations are diverse and complex, with each country presenting unique challenges and opportunities. The company's international strategy involves adapting to local market conditions while maintaining its core values and business practices. Walmart's global operations are segmented into three regions: the Americas, Asia, and Africa.

In the Americas, Walmart operates in 11 countries, including the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The company has more than 5,000 stores in the region and employs more than 1.5 million associates. Walmart's operations in the Americas generate the majority of the company's revenue.

In Asia, Walmart operates in five countries, including China, India, and Japan. The company has more than 1,000 stores in the region and employs more than 200,000 associates. Walmart's operations in Asia are focused on growth and expansion, particularly in China, which is one of the company's largest markets outside of the United States.

In Africa, Walmart operates in four countries, including South Africa and Botswana. The company has more than 400 stores in the region and employs more than 50,000 associates. Walmart's operations in Africa are focused on providing affordable products and services to underserved communities.

Walmart's Online Presence

Walmart has been expanding its online presence in recent years to keep up with the competition. In 2021, had 40% of American shoppers making purchases, while Amazon had 73%. Walmart has been trying to catch up by investing in its online platform and offering more online shopping options for customers.

One way Walmart has been improving its online presence is through its acquisition of in 2016. was an online retailer that specialized in selling groceries and household essentials. Walmart acquired the company to expand its online grocery business and improve its e-commerce technology.

Walmart has also been investing in its mobile app to offer more convenient shopping options for customers. The app allows customers to order groceries for pickup or delivery, refill prescriptions, and even use Walmart Pay to make purchases in-store.

Another way Walmart is improving its online presence is through its partnership with Shopify. In 2020, Walmart announced that it would be partnering with Shopify to expand its online marketplace and offer more products to customers. This partnership allows small and medium-sized businesses to sell their products on Walmart's online marketplace, giving them access to a wider customer base.

Overall, Walmart is making strides in improving its online presence to keep up with the competition. By investing in e-commerce technology, expanding its online grocery business, and partnering with Shopify, Walmart is positioning itself to be a major player in the online retail space.

Walmart's Controversies

Walmart, being one of the largest retail chains in the world, has faced its fair share of controversies over the years. Here are a few notable ones:

1. Discrimination Lawsuits: Walmart has been accused of discrimination against women and minorities in the past. In 2019, the company settled a class-action lawsuit that accused it of discriminating against female employees by paying them less than their male counterparts and denying them promotions.

2. Labor Practices: Walmart has been criticized for its labor practices, including low wages and inadequate benefits. In 2021, the company faced a lawsuit from the National Labor Relations Board for allegedly violating workers' rights by retaliating against them for participating in strikes and protests.

3. Environmental Impact: Walmart has been accused of contributing to environmental degradation through its business practices. The company has faced criticism for its use of non-renewable energy sources, its impact on local ecosystems, and its contribution to plastic waste.

4. Bribery Scandal: In 2012, Walmart faced a bribery scandal in Mexico, where it was accused of paying bribes to local officials to speed up the process of obtaining permits and licenses. The scandal resulted in a federal investigation and several high-level resignations.

5. Self-Checkout Theft: In 2022, Walmart faced a controversy over self-checkout thefts and fines due to overcharging. The retailer reported huge financial losses due to theft, which many put the blame on self-checkout kiosks. The company's CEO, Doug McMillon, announced that shoppers could face higher prices and more store closures due to shoplifting.

While Walmart has faced its fair share of controversies, it continues to be one of the most successful retail chains in the world. The company has made efforts to improve its labor practices, reduce its environmental impact, and give back to the community through charitable donations.

Walmart's Financials

Walmart is one of the largest retailers in the world, and its financials reflect its massive size. In 2023, the company reported $486 billion in revenue and $14.7 billion in profit. These numbers are a testament to the company's ability to generate significant revenue and profits year after year.

Walmart's financials are impressive, but they are not without challenges. The company faces stiff competition from other retailers, and it must continually adapt to changing market conditions to remain successful. One area where Walmart has been successful is in its online sales. In 2023, Walmart's eCommerce sales grew by 17%, helping to drive overall sales growth.

Another area where Walmart has been successful is in its ability to control costs. The company has a reputation for being a low-cost provider, and it has been able to maintain this reputation by keeping its costs low. Walmart has achieved this by using technology to streamline its operations and by negotiating favorable deals with suppliers.

Overall, Walmart's financials are a reflection of the company's size and success. The company generates significant revenue and profits, and it has been able to maintain this success by adapting to changing market conditions and controlling costs.

Walmart's Advertising Strategies

Walmart is one of the largest retailers in the world, with a significant presence in the United States and many other countries. To maintain its position in the market, Walmart has a strong advertising strategy that helps it reach its target audience effectively.

One of the key aspects of Walmart's advertising strategy is its focus on digital marketing. Walmart has a strong online presence, and it uses various digital marketing channels to reach its customers.

For example, Walmart uses social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to promote its products and services. It also uses email marketing campaigns to keep its customers informed about new products, sales, and promotions. Another important aspect of Walmart's advertising strategy is its focus on offering value to its customers.

Walmart is known for offering low prices on a wide range of products, and it uses this as a selling point in its advertising. For example, Walmart's slogan "Save Money. Live Better." emphasizes its commitment to providing affordable products to its customers. Walmart also uses various advertising channels to reach its target audience.

For example, it uses television advertising to promote its products and services to a broad audience. It also uses print advertising in newspapers and magazines to reach customers who prefer traditional media channels. In addition to traditional advertising channels, Walmart also uses innovative advertising strategies.

For example, it has partnered with various celebrities and influencers to promote its products on social media. It has also used augmented reality technology to create interactive advertising experiences for its customers.

Overall, Walmart's advertising strategy is focused on reaching its target audience effectively and offering value to its customers. By using a combination of traditional and digital marketing channels, Walmart is able to maintain its position as one of the largest retailers in the world.

Walmart's Store Layout and Design

Walmart has been reimagining its store layout and design to create seamless omni-shopping experiences for its customers. The company has been implementing a new layout across 1,000 stores since 2022, with a focus on making Walmart a destination where customers want to spend their time.

The new store design features interactive displays, digital signage, and colorful iconography that greet customers as they enter the store. The company has also redesigned its stores' exteriors and interiors to reflect its app's icon, creating a clean and modern look.

One of the key features of the new store design is the use of technology to enhance the shopping experience. Walmart has been experimenting with augmented reality (AR) displays that allow customers to see how products would look in their homes before making a purchase. The company has also been testing out virtual reality (VR) displays that simulate different environments, such as a beach or a city street, to showcase products in a more immersive way.

Another important aspect of Walmart's store layout and design is its focus on sustainability. The company has been incorporating eco-friendly features into its stores, such as LED lighting, solar panels, and energy-efficient heating and cooling systems. Walmart has also been experimenting with new ways to reduce waste, such as using compostable packaging and partnering with local farmers to reduce food waste.

Walmart's Private Label Brands

Walmart is known for its private label brands that offer a wide variety of products at affordable prices. The retailer has been investing in its house brands and now owns nearly 320 private label brands, including popular names such as Great Value, Equate, Sam's Choice, and Ol' Roy.

Great Value is a private label grocery brand created in 1993 by Walmart and claims to be as good in quality as national brand offerings. The brand lists hundreds of household and grocery items such as snacks, dried goods, cleaning supplies, candy, and beverages.

It is bought by 72.7% of consumers in the US, making it one of the most popular private label brands in the country. Equate is another popular private label brand owned by Walmart. It offers a wide range of pharmacy products, including over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and personal care items.

Equate products are often priced lower than their national brand counterparts, making them an affordable option for consumers. In addition to grocery and pharmacy products, Walmart's private label brands also include clothing, home goods, and pet products.

For example, Time and Tru offers affordable women's clothing, while Mainstays offers a range of home goods such as bedding, furniture, and kitchenware. Ol' Roy is Walmart's private label brand for dog food, and it has been around since 1983.

Walmart's private label brands have been successful in offering affordable options to consumers while maintaining quality. With the retailer continuing to invest in its house brands, it is likely that we will see more private label products from Walmart in the future.

Walmart's Technology Innovations

Walmart has been at the forefront of technology innovations in the retail industry. The company has been investing heavily in technology to improve its operations, enhance customer experience, and stay ahead of the competition.

One of Walmart's notable technology innovations is its use of robotics in stores and distribution centers. The company has been using robots to automate many processes, such as cleaning floors, scanning shelves for inventory, and unloading trucks. This has helped Walmart improve efficiency, reduce costs, and free up employees to focus on more important tasks.

Walmart has also been experimenting with drone delivery to improve its last-mile delivery capabilities. The company has been testing drone deliveries in select markets and plans to expand the service to more locations. Walmart's drone delivery service has the potential to improve delivery times, reduce costs, and provide better service to customers.

Another technology innovation that Walmart has been working on is its use of big data. The company has been collecting vast amounts of data on its customers' shopping habits, preferences, and behaviors. Walmart has been using this data to personalize its marketing messages, improve its product offerings, and enhance the overall customer experience.

Walmart has also been investing in mobile technology to make shopping more convenient for customers. The company has developed a mobile app that allows customers to shop, pay, and track their orders from their mobile devices. Walmart has also been experimenting with mobile checkout to reduce wait times and improve the checkout experience.

Overall, Walmart's technology innovations have helped the company stay competitive in the ever-evolving retail industry. By investing in robotics, drone delivery, big data, and mobile technology, Walmart has been able to improve its operations, enhance customer experience, and provide better service to its customers.

Walmart's Customer Base

Walmart is known for its low prices and wide selection of products, which has made it a popular shopping destination for many consumers. According to a report by Statista, Walmart had an estimated 265 million customers worldwide in 2020.

This massive customer base is made up of a diverse group of people, including families, college students, and seniors. One of the reasons why Walmart has been able to attract such a large customer base is its focus on providing affordable products.

The company's "Everyday Low Prices" strategy has helped it to become one of the largest retailers in the world. Walmart also offers a price matching policy, which allows customers to get the best deal possible on their purchases. Walmart's customer base is also diverse in terms of demographics. According to a report by eMarketer, Walmart is the top retailer for low-income households in the United States.

The company has also been successful in attracting Hispanic and African American shoppers, who make up a significant portion of its customer base. In addition, Walmart has been making efforts to appeal to younger shoppers by expanding its online offerings and partnering with popular brands. Overall, Walmart's customer base is vast and diverse, ranging from low-income households to college students to seniors.

The company's focus on providing affordable products and its wide selection of items has made it a popular shopping destination for millions of people around the world.

Walmart's Expansion Plans

Walmart has been expanding its reach beyond retail for future growth. The company plans to spend about $14 billion in the coming year, improving its supply chain and adding automation, according to the company's CFO, Brett Biggs. This is higher than its typical rate of $10 billion per year.

One of Walmart's key expansion plans is in the healthcare industry. The company has opened several Walmart Health clinics, which offer primary care, dental care, and mental health services. These clinics are designed to be affordable and accessible to everyone, regardless of their insurance status. Walmart also plans to expand its telehealth services, allowing customers to access healthcare remotely.

Another area of expansion for Walmart is in the financial sector. The company has partnered with fintech companies to offer a range of financial services, including installment loans, money transfers, and even a Walmart-branded credit card. Walmart also plans to launch a new fintech startup, which will focus on providing financial services to underbanked and underserved communities.

In addition, Walmart is expanding its e-commerce capabilities. The company has been investing heavily in its online platform, with a focus on improving the customer experience. Walmart has also been experimenting with new delivery methods, such as autonomous vehicles and drones, to make online shopping more convenient and efficient.

Overall, Walmart's expansion plans are aimed at diversifying the company's revenue streams and staying ahead of the competition. By investing in healthcare, finance, and e-commerce, Walmart is positioning itself for long-term growth and success.

Walmart's Leadership

Walmart is led by a team of experienced executives who are responsible for overseeing the company's operations and driving its growth. The current CEO of Walmart is Doug McMillon, who has been at the helm since 2014.

Under his leadership, Walmart has continued to expand its business and increase its revenue. In addition to McMillon, Walmart's leadership team includes a number of other key executives who play important roles in the company's success.

These include Suresh Kumar, who serves as the President and CEO of Walmart U.S., Judith McKenna, who is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Walmart International, and Kathryn McLay, who is the President and CEO of Sam's Club. One of the key priorities of Walmart's leadership team is to ensure that the company remains competitive in a rapidly changing retail landscape.

To achieve this, they have invested heavily in technology and innovation, with a focus on improving the customer experience both in-store and online. Walmart has also made a commitment to sustainability, with initiatives aimed at reducing waste and promoting renewable energy.

Overall, Walmart's leadership team is focused on driving growth and delivering value to customers, while also being responsible corporate citizens. Their efforts have helped Walmart remain one of the world's largest and most successful retailers, with a presence in markets around the globe.

Walmart's Future

Walmart is constantly looking for ways to grow and expand its business. In 2020, the company saw a significant increase in revenue, with U.S. e-commerce contributing to the growth by jumping 79%. Looking ahead, Walmart is planning for future growth by exploring opportunities beyond retail.

One area where Walmart is looking to expand is in the healthcare industry. The company is already operating clinics in some of its stores, and it plans to open more in the future. These clinics offer a range of services, including primary care, dental care, and mental health services. Walmart is also exploring the possibility of offering health insurance to its customers.

Another area where Walmart is focusing its attention is advertising. The company has a massive reach, with millions of customers visiting its stores and website every day. Walmart is looking to leverage this reach by offering advertising services to businesses. The company is already offering advertising on its website, and it plans to expand this service in the future.

Walmart is also investing in technology to improve the shopping experience for its customers. The company is testing new technologies, such as virtual reality, to help customers visualize products before they buy them. Walmart is also working on developing new delivery methods, such as drones and autonomous vehicles, to make shopping more convenient for its customers.


Walmart is one of the largest retailers in the world, with nearly 11,700 stores worldwide. The company has come a long way since its humble beginnings as a small discount store in Arkansas in 1945. Today, Walmart is a publicly-traded family-owned company, with the Walton family holding 51% of the company's shares.

One of the most interesting facts about Walmart is that almost all Americans live within 10 minutes of a Walmart store. This accessibility has made Walmart a popular destination for shoppers looking for affordable prices and a wide range of products.

Walmart is also known for its commitment to sustainability and supporting small and medium-sized farmers. The company sources $4 billion worth of food from these farmers and funds several farmer training programs.

While Walmart has faced criticism over the years for its labor practices and impact on local communities, the company continues to be a major player in the retail industry. With its vast network of stores and commitment to sustainability, Walmart is likely to remain a household name for years to come.

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Garrett Parker

Written by Garrett Parker

Garrett by trade is a personal finance freelance writer and journalist. With over 10 years experience he's covered businesses, CEOs, and investments. However he does like to take on other topics involving some of his personal interests like automobiles, future technologies, and anything else that could change the world.

Read more posts by Garrett Parker

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