Boston, MA 05/30/2014 (wallstreetpr) – Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) has its eyes fixed on growth. The company is not only seeking a big online presence, but also expanding land-based locations in promising markets such as China.
In the latest move, the retailer has announced plans to increase investment in the communist nation over the next three years. This year the company has earmarked $93 million to establish 30 new retail stores in China’s biggest cities.
China is undergoing a big urbanization drive, and that provides an opportunity for Wal-Mart to tap more revenue even in the third and fourth-tier cities. As such, the retailer also has plans for more supercenters in the smaller cities.
In addition to the new retail stores and supercenters, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) also plans to open at least two new branches of Sam’s Club chain this year. The Sam’s Clubs are membership-only retail warehouses that are popular among the middle and high-income shoppers.
The world’s largest retailer, last year, announced plans to open 110 new stores and distribution centers in China in the next three year. The company had 400 retail outlets in China by the end of April 2014.
Upgrading existing stores
In addition to establishing new stores in order to take advantage of China’s big retail opportunity, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) intends to invest about $94 million to upgrade its existing stores in the country. The amount will first capture 55 old stores for upgrade as the company seeks to inject efficiency into its system while enhancing customer experience.
According to the incoming CEO of Wal-Mart China, Sean Clark, the retailer will continue to look into its system to identify inefficient areas that need improvements.
Efficiency means lower costs
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) seeks value for its shareholders, especially given that the company’s performance in recent times has been a cause for concern. It reported earnings per share of $1.10 in the most recent quarter, yet analysts projected earnings per share of $1.15 for the quarter. Weakness was also seen in the revenue column that came in at $114.20 billion, missing the consensus estimate of $116.29 billion.