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Walmart Name Change Enhances Online Shift

Going from Wal-Mart to Walmart signals the retailer’s focus on growing its e-commerce presence.
December 7, 2017

​BENTONVILLE, Ark. – This week, Wal-Mart officially became Walmart, a move that marks more than just a name change, according to the Wall Street Journal. The news source says that the name change highlights the company’s shift away from building traditional stores toward competing online with rival Amazon.

“Changing our corporate name from Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., to Walmart Inc. is just a symbol of how customers are shopping us today and how they’ll increasingly shop us in the future. Whether it’s in our stores, on our sites, with our apps, by using their voice or whatever comes next, there is just one Walmart as far as our customers are concerned. When they shop with us, they expect it to be an easy and seamless experience,” says President & CEO Doug McMillon on the company’s website.

McMillon continues that Walmart is focused on building its e-commerce and digital capabilities, quoting the company’s founder, Sam Walton, who said: “‘To succeed in this world, you have to change all the time.’ He wouldn’t have known that customers in the future would shop on their smart phones or with their voices, but he did know that retail would continue to change. He taught us that, and that for a company to succeed, it has to be agile and innovative.”

The Journal notes that physical Walmart stores account for more than 95% of the company’s revenue, but in recent years it has shifted from opening hundreds of new stores to growing online and improving existing locations. Walmart also purchased online retailer in 2016 for $3.3 billion to grow its e-commerce capabilities.

To pay for the online strategy, executives said in October that the retailer would deepen cost-cutting and only open around two dozen U.S. stores next fiscal year, the lowest number in at least 25 years.