Bringing Our Purpose to Life

Walmart Shareholders Meeting 2013

By Doug McMillon, President & CEO, Walmart

June 07, 2013

Walmart Shareholders Meeting 2013

Remarks as Prepared for Doug McMillon

All over the world, we have a strong team. Thank you! 

Your focus is delivering results. Last year, you grew sales by 7.4% to more than $135 billion. You increased profitability by 8.3% to $6.7 billion. In other words, in Walmart International alone, you added $9.3 billion in sales and $512 million in operating income in one year! And over the last four years in International, we have added $37.6 billion in sales and over $1.8 billion in operating income.

Walmart International is known for driving top-line growth ...but we also know how important it is to improve returns. We do that by making good capital investment decisions and through productivity improvements that lower expenses. 

Now, we didn't get off to a good start in the first quarter, so we need to stay focused on expenses as we drive sales for the balance of the year. Remember, it's the productivity loop that enables us to deliver value for customers AND contribute to good returns for our shareholders.

So, how will we do it? We will do it - by owning our purpose - and by bringing it to life every day. Let me share a number with you. When you add up our customer transactions globally in all 27 countries, together we served customers more than 12 billion times over the past year. Think about it. 

That's 12 billion chances to make a difference in someone's life. Isn't that amazing? We don't just sell products. Every time we save someone a little money, we're helping them pay the rent or put a down payment on an apartment or home …put a few extra items into their shopping cart… or pay for their children's education.

We help them save money so they can invest it elsewhere and, literally, live a better life. 

That's why EDLP matters. That's why we have to be the best merchants we can be. One customer, one item at a time.   We often focus on unique local needs in merchandising, but today I'd like to focus on an item we have in common.  Check out this play ball. 

I see this item featured all over the world and, as a company, we sold more than 8 million of these last year. A kid can do a lot with one of these. You can play kick ball, soccer, throw it at your little brother, lots of stuff. Today, I thought it might be fun to see what our CEO, Mike Duke, would do with one of these. I've seen what he does with it in a store, he sells them...

But what would he do on a stage like this? Let's find out. Mike, would you please come up here for a minute? Mike, I'd like to introduce you to Fabiano Reis from Brazil. He is a store manager at our Maxxi store 227 in Bahia. He also happens to have played a little soccer. The idea is to see if you can score a goal on him. We'll place the ball over here.

Mike Duke:

Well, Doug, I saw this one coming. You surprised me last year with that Masala Coke ... but this year, I'm prepared. You know I'm all about empowering people with training and development opportunities. Did you see that guy earlier in the program with the soccer ball skills? Where's that guy?

I'd like to introduce you to Dan Magness, a freestyler pro from the UK. And since you chose a goalie, I've chosen Dan to take the shot for me. Maybe this will be the predictor of next year's world cup.

Doug McMillon:

Thank you all for being good sports.  You just reminded us that a big part of being a merchant at Walmart means having fun!

You know, I shared this item not just because it's fun, but because I see it featured in just about every store I visit. It may have different names, kids may play with it in different ways, but it translates everywhere. When I see it, it always makes me feel good that families that might not have much can afford a great toy at a really low price.  And when you stop to think about it… isn't that what we do every day? 

We live in different places, speak different languages, but we all work toward one purpose. And we're united by one common culture. 

It starts with our beliefs:

  • Making the customer #1
  • Treating each other with respect
  • Striving to always get better
  • And acting with integrity in everything we do

It starts with our beliefs ...but it's backed up by our actions. That's why we do things like strengthen our global compliance program to ensure we're doing the right things the right way. It's not what we say… it's what we do that really matters.

It's about living the culture out loud and genuinely demonstrating it in our stores and clubs… in our interactions with our customers and each other. Every year, we have 12 billion opportunities to get it right. I want to ask each of us today to make every one of those opportunities count. And as we do, we can stand tall.

We can know that we are making a difference in the world… and we're doing it in a way that makes our families and communities proud.

Thank you.