West Branch Walmart Unveils Customer Friendly Design

Renovated store offers a glimpse into the next generation of shopping

WEST BRANCH, Mich., June 28, 2010 – The West Branch Walmart, located at 2750 Cook Road, will celebrate a grand re-opening this week, giving local shoppers a glimpse of the company’s next generation of store design and customer experience. The results of a three-month remodeling project will be unveiled at the West Branch Walmart at 8 a.m., Friday, July 2. Among the many improvements are a new layout, wider aisles, low-profile shelving, bright interior paint scheme, enhanced lighting and easy-to-read signage to make the shopping experience more convenient for customers.

According to West Branch Town Supervisor Jay Spaulding, Walmart is a community partner. “As the largest employer in West Branch Township, and as one of the largest employers in Ogemaw County, Walmart's investment in our community is very much appreciated,” said Spaulding. “Their remodeling and upgrading should provide a better experience for the people of our township, our county, and the surrounding area,” he added.

New Layout Improves Customer Experience

The remodeled West Branch store features a more open shopping environment with wider aisles that contain no product displays. Walmart also aligned the departments that customers shop most frequently, making it quicker to purchase everyday items, including moving the pet department next to the grocery department.

“We listened to our customers and have redesigned the store to make shopping at Walmart even easier,” said store manager Scott Kenney.

A bright interior paint scheme and enhanced lighting create a more inviting shopping experience and help define the store’s merchandise areas. Low-profile shelving creates an improved sightline and directional signage helps customers find the products they need.

Among the changes, Walmart upgraded the pharmacy and vision center, creating a much friendlier, accessible experience. The wide selection of camping and fishing equipment in the sporting goods department has been moved along with toys to a central location near the lawn and garden center so visitors to the area can find all their equipment needs in one area. Customers will also appreciate the enhanced hardware department with a new electronic paint matching system. The store also combined the Site-to-Store pick-up location and photo lab into a single area at the rear of the store.

Expanded Departments Add Value and Savings

The remodel brings Walmart customers an expanded electronics department featuring a wide selection of the latest consumer electronics and home entertainment. The new design includes a more hands-on experience for customers with expansive video gaming selection and portable electronics. The interactive experience enables shoppers to test new technology.

A new department called Celebration Station has been added and will feature party supplies, greeting cards, balloons and helium tanks, cake supplies and gift wrap.

Grand Re-opening Activities Include Support for Local Organizations

The grand re-opening celebration is scheduled for Friday, July 2, and will begin with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8 a.m. Local dignitaries will help Kenny cut the ribbon to the remodeled store and members of the local Veterans of Foreign Wars will present the colors.

During the ceremony, store associates will present $7,250 in grants from the Walmart Foundation to three local organizations, including a $3,500 donation to the American Cancer Society, $3,250 to the American Red Cross and $500 to the Veterans of Foreign Wars West Branch Post 4077.

Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have committed $2 billion to U.S. hunger relief efforts through 2015. The Fighting Hunger Together campaign will also engage Walmart customers and associates in the fight against hunger. More information can be found at walmart.com/fightinghunger.

Commitment to the Environment

The store is also committed to being a good environmental steward. Part of the cement used in the store’s concrete flooring is made with recycled materials, and the baseboards are manufactured from 100 percent recycled plastic. The photo department also uses green technology, operating completely without liquid chemicals for photo processing. The store also has improved its recycling efforts with a new recycling program which features a sandwich bale process that takes all loose plastic, hangers, aluminum cans and office paper, sandwiches them between cardboard, bundles them into bales and sends them to recycling centers. In addition, the store will be composting all organic products.

About Walmart

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT), or “Walmart,” serves customers and members more than 200 million times per week at more than 8,400 retail units under 55 different banners in 15 countries. With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Walmart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. A leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity, Walmart ranked first among retailers in Fortune Magazine’s 2009 Most Admired Companies survey. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting www.walmartstores.com and on Twitter at http://Twitter.com/walmart. Online merchandise sales are available at www.walmart.com and www.samsclub.com.

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EDITOR’S NOTES

  • Scott Kenney, store manager, can provide details about the grand re-opening, offer quotes for interviews and arrange for photo opportunities or preview tours. He can be contacted at 989-343-1309.
  • Walmart PR and Brand Reputation, 800-331-0085
  • Walmart information online: www.walmartstores.com; merchandise sales: www.walmart.com
  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is the legal trade name of the corporation. The name "Walmart," expressed as one word and without punctuation, is a trademark of the company and is used analogously to describe the company and its stores. Use the trade name when it is necessary to identify the legal entity, such as when reporting financial results, litigation or corporate governance.