BEAUMONT, Calif., March 22 -- The grand opening of the new Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) Supercenter in Beaumont, Calif., today is a milestone for the U.S. company, marking 2,000 Wal-Mart Supercenters officially open across the country. Before the store opened its doors today, it held a pre-opening celebration, Saturday, March 18 to thank customers, associates and suppliers for their patronage and partnership.
"We are very excited to be a growing part of the California community," said Henry Jordan, California regional general manager, Wal-Mart. "We are creating new jobs and helping working families to save money, and that's worth celebrating with Californians who have continued to be a part of that effort."
Ryan Cabrera Hits the Wal-Mart Stage
Hundreds of residents turned out for the store's community event, which included a live concert from rising recording artist Ryan Cabrera to kick-off the week's festivities. Surrounded by tents, booths and inflatables, participants were able to freely join in festivities surrounding the stage, as well as show their support for America's Second Harvest Food Bank, which held a silent auction of autographed music items from well-known artists such as Alabama, George Straight and Lonestar.
Beaumont Wal-Mart Supercenter Features
Located at 1540 E. Second St., the new 216,000-square-foot store boasts many of the latest merchandise features coming to Wal-Mart Supercenters across the U.S., including wider aisles, concrete and hardwood floors throughout the store, an expanded Garden Center, and its popular exclusive apparel line George(C). The new Supercenter also includes an expanded selection of organic food items in its grocery. In addition, customers will find new features in the electronics section that showcase the latest in computers, iPods and hi- definition televisions and a do-it-yourself paint center.
The new 24-hour Supercenter offers a one-stop shopping experience for customers, including a bakery, delicatessen, frozen food section and meat, dairy and fresh produce sections and 36 general merchandise departments which include apparel and accessories, fine jewelry, a lawn and garden center, toys, automotive and health and beauty aids. Other store features include a Tire & Lube Express, a Subway restaurant, a portrait studio, a one-hour photo lab, a vision center, a pharmacy, a Hair Works hair salon, and a Banco Popular community bank branch.
More Than 3,400 Applicants for 600 New Jobs
The store will employ approximately 600 associates, most of which will be full-time. More than 3,400 people applied for jobs at the new store, according to Store Manager Rodney Colyott.
"The large number of applicants for this new store doesn't surprise me at all," said Colyott. "Great career opportunities, fantastic benefits and lasting friendships are just a few of the positive aspects of becoming a Wal- Mart associate." Some of the Beaumont store's associates have worked for Wal- Mart for more than 10 years, added Colyott. The average wage at Wal-Mart for full-time hourly associates in California is $10.50 per hour.*
$34,000 in Additional Charitable Support
The store also announced $34,000 in direct grant donations to local organizations as a part of Wal-Mart's Good Works community involvement program. The Beaumont Library District received $5,000 to provide repairs and renovation to an elevator and the upper level of its building; the Second Harvest Food Bank of Riverside and San Bernardino Counties also received $5,000; and Child Help USA, which serves abused and neglected children, received a $5,250 grant. Other groups receiving donations in celebration of the grand opening include:
* American Cancer Society * Veterans of Foreign Wars * Renu Hope Foundation * City of Riverside Fire Department Explorer Post 566 * City of Beaumont Police Department Citizen Volunteer Patrol Program * Carol's Kitchen Food Pantry
As with any Wal-Mart store, organizations can contact their local Wal-Mart to inquire about local grant opportunities to raise dollars outside store locations throughout the year.
Wal-Mart Economic Impact in California
EDITOR'S NOTE: See http://www.walmartfacts.com for the latest information about Wal-Mart in California.
As of January 15, 2006, Wal-Mart employed 70,412 associates and owned and operated the following facilities in the state of California:
* Supercenters: 13 * Discount Stores: 146 * SAM'S CLUBS: 35 * Distribution Centers: 9
In 2004, Wal-Mart collected on behalf of the state of California more than $719.9 million in sales taxes and paid more than $99.7 million in state and local taxes.
Wal-Mart benefits -- available to full- and part-time associates -- include healthcare insurance with no lifetime maximum. Wal-Mart offers a choice of as many as 18 health plans that cost as little as $11 a month in some areas. Both full and part-time Wal-Mart associates are eligible for health care benefits. Wal-Mart also offers a 401(k) plan and profit sharing contributions, whether an associate contributes or not, store discount cards, performance-based bonuses, discounted stock purchase program and life insurance.
About Wal-Mart Stores
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. operates Wal-Mart Stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and SAM'S CLUB locations in the United States. Internationally, the company operates in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Puerto Rico, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The company's securities are listed on the New York and Pacific stock exchanges under the symbol WMT. More information about Wal-Mart can be found by visiting http://www.walmartfacts.com . Online merchandise sales are available at http://www.walmart.com .
* Average wage taken yearly (December 2005). See http://www.walmartfacts.com for more details.
SOURCE Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.03/22/2006
CONTACT: Melissa O'Brien, Corporate Communications of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., +1-479-273-4314;
Amy Juaristi, +1-310-633-9428,
ajuaristi@HillandKnowlton.com , for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Web site: http://www.walmartstores.com