Wal-Mart Corporation.

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Strategic Management Case Study on Case 27

(Pearce & Robinson, Strategic Management - Formulation,

Implementation and Control)



Operating a mass merchandising retail store in all 50 states of the US under a variety of formats, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (Wal-Mart) scores a number of 'tops' in its businesses. It has the largest discount department store chain in the world, largest retail firm in the US and largest retailer in the world, the wealthiest and most powerful corporation in the world. And more recently, Wal-Mart gained the top spot of the most admired company in the world (www.fortune.com).

To sustain its competitive advantage, Wal-Mart has constantly adapt to its existing strategies to threats and opportunities in the environment. As noted by Warren Buffett (of Berkshire Hathaway) when it came to casting his vote for the most admired company in America for 2002, 'Wal-Mart is the largest company around, and it hasn't lost a bit of the dynamism that it had back when Sam Walton started it' (Stein, N.


This case study will analyse the internal and external factors that put Wal-Mart in its current position operating in the competitive retailing environment. The flow of the analysis will start with a brief indication of the sector of business Wal-Mart is operating, followed by the analysis of its internal factors comprising the company's strength and weaknesses. Wal-Mart's external factors will then be analysed on its opportunities and threats. The challenges facing Wal-Mart in the near future is also addressed.

The Business and the Industry

Wal-Mart is engrossed with end consumers in its business. On top of the traditional retailing of general merchandise and discount department stores, Wal-Mart appeals to almost every aspects of their needs and wants, even in real-estate, flower delivery, gas stations, used cars and...