“With inflation remaining at particularly high levels, our commitment is to keep prices of private label products low,” Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said in one of the interviews on the sidelines of the presentation of the latest budget figures. The last quarter (to the end of January) ended with revenues of 159.8 billion euros for the world’s largest retailer, 7.3 percent more than last year.
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STRATEGY AND OUTLOOK
The deteriorating macroeconomic picture is pushing the US retail giant to focus even more on customer loyalty, even at the cost of limiting margins.
Neil Saunders, CEO at GlobalData, says, “marketing and promotion strategies adopted by Walmart are helping sales hold up in the face of a difficult consumer scenario, with some difficulties in the non-food segment. For lower-income customers, this is due to inflation.” In this regard, McMillon, presenting the financial results, pointed out that the newly remodeled US stores focus on improving categories such as clothing and home, adding that the initial customer response is “promising”.
Meanwhile, Walmart claimed the success of its e-commerce strategies, with sales growing by +17% in this channel over the past year. John Furner, President and CEO at Walmart US, says, “the boundaries between physical and digital channels are increasingly blurred, partly because stores often operate as order fulfillment centers”. Online shoppers are also younger than average, technology savvy, and, often, have higher incomes.