BENTONVILLE, Ark., June 2, 2014 – This week, Walmart will host 14,000 shareholders, including thousands of associates from 27 countries, at its annual Shareholders meeting in Bentonville. This year’s Shareholders theme is serving customers through innovation.
“This is a special week at Walmart. We celebrate and thank our 2.2 million associates from around the globe who are always coming up with new and exciting ways to serve our customers,” said Susan Chambers, executive vice president of global people at Walmart. “Mr. Sam always said our associates are our greatest source of ideas, and one of the best parts of this week is hearing their ideas and insights on how we can serve our customers even better.”
Finding new ways to serve customers or making current methods of serving them better has been a hallmark of Walmart for more than 50 years. With a focus on the integration of digital and physical retail, Walmart is better positioned than other retailers to serve customers wherever, whenever and however they want.
“I’m looking forward to coming to Shareholders and seeing where everything started for Walmart,” said Samantha Reed, an associate from Mishawaka, Ind. “One of my favorite parts of my job is interacting with my customers. This week I hope to hear from other associates in the U.S. and around the world how they best serve customers.”
Serving customers in new ways
Walmart Global eCommerce
- Walmart Global eCommerce is finding new ways to make shopping faster, easier and more convenient for customers. Today, more and more customers are relying on technology to do their shopping. In the U.S., more than half the visits to Walmart.com are occurring on mobile devices. To put that in context, five years ago it was only at 1 percent. In the UK, one-third of online sales for Asda are coming from smartphones.
- Walmart is creating and building smaller format stores to help customers with their quick fill-in trips. This move provides even more access and convenience for customers who have limited shopping options, which typically means limited choice and higher prices. By combining digital retail with physical stores, both small and large, Walmart is able to help even more customers save time and money on their shopping.
- At a time when convenience is more important to our customers than ever, we’re innovating to help customers save time. For instance, in the U.K., the online grocery market has doubled in the last five years and is projected to do the same in the next five years. Asda is offering its customers more ways to shop, including via click and collect delivery. By the end of this year, Asda will have close to 600 access points, and in the future it’s projected a third of all of Asda’s e-commerce sales will come from collection.
- Finding ways to save people money isn’t a new idea, but Sam’s Club has created new ways to make it even easier for members to save money. The new Cash Rewards program allows Plus Members to earn $10 in cash rewards for every $500 they spend.
“It’s an honor to come to Shareholders and represent all of the associates at my supercenter in Toledo who work hard every day to take care of our customers,” said Ron Bennett from Toledo, Ohio. “I love talking to customers. I love for them to feel appreciated. The smile we put on their face is awesome.”
“Our associates do great things every day for our customers,” added Chambers. “Serving our customers through innovation is going to create even more opportunity for our associates. In the last year alone in the U.S. we promoted more than 190,000 people at Walmart and Sam’s Club, hired more than 42,000 veterans and paid more than $500 million in bonuses to our hourly associates. We see opportunity come to life every day for our associates.”
To be a part of the action and learn more about the company’s business, tune in to its Shareholders Meeting webcast on June 6 at 7 a.m. CDT, and follow us @walmartnewsroom using #WMTShares.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better – anytime and anywhere – in retail stores, online and through their mobile devices. Each week, more than 250 million customers and members visit our 10,994 stores under 71 banners in 27 countries and ecommerce websites in 10 countries. With fiscal year 2014 sales of approximately $473 billion, Walmart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://corporate.walmart.com, on Facebook at http://facebook.com/walmart and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart. Online merchandise sales are available at http://www.walmart.com and http://www.samsclub.com.