Wal-Mart expects its online sales to jump 40% next year

Wednesday, 11 October 2017, 03:01:08 PM. Wal-Mart is all about online, anticipating digital sales next fiscal year will rise about 40% and that it will double the number of U.S. curbside locations for online grocery shoppers at its stores. The world's largest retailer also continues to scale back new store growth in the U.S.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is all about online, anticipating that digital sales next fiscal year will rise about 40% and that it will double the number of U.S. curbside locations for online grocery shoppers at its stores. But the world's largest retailer continues to scale back new store growth in the U.S., with plans to open only 25 in its fiscal year 2019, which ends in January 2019. That compares with opening 230 U.S. stores during fiscal 2016. The retail behemoth is predicting net sales growth at or above 3%, driven by online sales and growth from existing stores for the next fiscal year. The company reiterated its per-share earnings guidance for next year and launched a two-year, $20-billion share repurchase program. Wal-Mart shares rose $3.60, or 4.5%, to $84.13 on the news Tuesday. “No doubt we are in a transformational period of history,” Wal-Mart Chief Executive Doug McMillon said in an address to investors at an annual meeting in Bentonville, Ark. “Our future is looking more digital.” The retailer has been armoring up online — with a variety of e-commerce-friendly acquisitions and policies — to take on Amazon.com Inc. and more traditional rivals, such as Target Corp. Moody's lead retail analyst Charlie O'Shea said Wal-Mart is giving shoppers a “compelling online alternative to Amazon” and views its online sales forecast as an “impressive goal, especially on the heels of the 30% [growth] outlined at the 2016 investor meeting, which at the time seemed aspirational.”...Read more
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