Saturday, March 03, 2007

Wal-Mart pushing hard internationally

Despite their decidely mixed record in international efforts, Wal-Mart is still going all out:
  • They are in talks to acquire a leading Russian retailer, Karusel
  • As previously reported here, there are in partnership to enter India
  • They are buying a 35% share in TrustMart, a top Chinese retailer, in what is seen as a direct challenge to Carrefour -- up to now the leading foreign retailer in China
  • They are also reported to be in talks to have their Asda subsidiary (#2 in the UK market) buy Sainsbury, the #3 chain
It's understandale that they see more growth potential overseas, but their record to date outside North America has been poor. They've been successful in Canada and Mexico, but Asda has struggled, to be polite about it ("Bankers have said they expect Wal-Mart and Asda have looked at Sainsbury because it is the latest realistic chance for it to catch up with Tesco, which is now double Asda's size"), Wal-Mart has done poorly in Japan, and Korea and Germany were total disasters.

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