I’ve written about Walmart in each of the six organizational change management texts that I’ve authored. They’re a fine company that generally does things very well.
One of the reasons for their prowess is that they typically keep abreast of “all their moving parts” and work hard to keep those parts moving together and in consonance. Right now, they’re in the process of revisiting their global plan and are seriously considering giving up control of their numerous (in the hundreds) stores in Brazil and the U.K. Walmart has struggled in these markets for some years, for a variety of reasons. Currently, the company is positioning itself to be more competitive, globally, with Amazon, a recent move that has taken place under the leadership of the new CEO Doug McMillon. Merging with U.K.’s J Sainsbury would create a food giant in the U.K. with a combined revenue of 68.9 billion; Wal is said to retain 40% of the merged company. Walmart entered the Brazilian market in 1995 and is the the 3rd largest supermarket group in that country, with 28.2 billion annual revenue and 465 stores. The company is in talks to sell a controlling interest of its operations there to private-equity firm Advent International. A third leg of the “shake-up” stool are plans to purchase a majority interest in Flipkart Group, a homegrown start-up that has become India’s largest e-commerce company. Changes, good well-thought through changes, are the name of the game in the real world of business!