Wal-Mart is the largest company in the world, measured by sales, $245 billion last year.
McKinsey estimates that one-eighth of the productivity gains of the late 1990s came from Wal-Mart.
Its $12 billion of imports from China account for a tenth of total U.S. imports from China.
It is estimated that Wal-Mart saved U.S. customers $20 billion last year.
82% percent of American households made a purchase at a Wal-Mart last year.
On the darker side, it pays lower wages and “censors” music and magazines.
And do you worry about monopoly or monopsony power? In this context I don’t, frankly, except for the cultural/censoring issue, but still it is worth noting that Wal-Mart’s U.S. market share of consumer staples could hit 50% by the end of the decade.
From Business Week , which has a long cover article, “Is Wal-Mart Too Powerful?”
Here are two more facts:
1. It is the biggest employer in 21 states, with more people in uniform than the U.S. Army
2. Every year the company loses $2 billion in theft, this “enterprise” alone would rank #694 on the Fortune 1000.