Walmart reports a solid start to 2012
US-based Walmart has announced its financial results for the first quarter ended 30 April 2012. Net sales rose 8.6% to USD112.3 billion while operating income increased 8.3% to USD6.4 billion. “We are very pleased that Walmart delivered earnings and comparable sales above guidance for the first quarter. Despite a negative impact from currency, we grew sales and operating profit over last year,” said Mike Duke, President and CEO of Walmart. “Our overall performance reflects the success of Walmart’s business model: driving the productivity loop, leveraging expenses and investing in price leadership. We believe that the momentum throughout our business positions us very well for the rest of the year.”
Walmart US reported a 2.6% rise in comparable-store sales, excluding fuel, marking the third consecutive quarter of positive comp growth. Total sales for the Walmart US division increased 5.9% during the quarter to USD66.3 billion, while operating income rose 8.1% to USD5 billion. “Our strategy is clear. Our merchants are focused on increasing sales through the right assortment at the right time and for the lowest price,” said Bill Simon, Walmart US President and CEO. Traffic has increased to both grocery and general merchandise areas of US stores. Average ticket was also up in the US.
Sam’s Club reported a 7.9% increase in net sales to USD13.9 billion during the quarter. Comps were up 5.3%, coming off a strong 4.2% in the same period the previous year. “Sam’s Club provides quality merchandise at the best price in a clean and efficient shopping environment. Clearly, our first quarter results show that this strategy is resonating with members,” said Rosalind Brewer, Sam’s Club President and CEO. “We have great summer events planned that will create excitement and drive traffic to the clubs in the second quarter.” Sam’s membership income for Q1 increased 2% while comparable traffic and ticket, excluding fuel, increased for both Business and Advantage members. Sam’s Club expects comp sales, excluding fuel, for the second quarter to increase 4-6%.
At Walmart International, net sales increased 15% to USD32.1 billion while operating income jumped 21.2% to USD1.3 billion. Acquisitions accounted for USD1.9 billion of sales and Walmart reported that Brazil, Mexico and the UK had the strongest overall sales growth for the quarter.
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