Walmart, known as Wal-Mart before 2008, is an American multinational company that operates a large number of discount warehouse and department stores. It employs over 2.1 million people, which is the largest employer of any private company in the world. Walmart operates in 15 countries and has over 8,500 stores. It is ranked as the 18th largest public company and reported a revenue of over $420 billion in the last fiscal year. If you have ever wondered who founded this successful company, keep reading to discover the answer.
Who founded Walmart?
In 1940 an Arkansas businessman called Sam Walton began a career in retail working at J. C. Penney. In 1945 he took a loan from his father-in-law and purchased his own variety store, called a Ben Franklin Store, in Newport, Arkansas. He was very successful in running the store, but after his lease ran out he could not renegotiate a renewal or find another location in Newport. He decided to try his luck in Bentonville, Arkansas where he opened a new Ben Franklin franchise. He named the store “Walton’s Five and Dime” and had immediate success by selling his products for less than his competitors.
In 1962 Sam Walton opened the first Wal-Mart Discount City in Rogers, Arkansas. Not even 5 years later he had 24 stores across Arkansas and broke the $10 million sales figure. In 1968, Walton expanded into 2 other states. The next year the company was incorporated with the name as Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. In 1971 the company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The company continued to experience massive growth and continues is strong position in the market today.