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Case study of Amazon and Wal-Mart-Financial Statement & Data Analysis

Question

Select two companies operating in the same sector and download their latest annual reports (minimum year ending 2014). You must not select Thorntons plc.Financial statements must be prepared using International Financial Reporting Standard IFRS.References should follow the APA 6th Edition referencing system.

Sample paper

A comparative case study of Amazon and Wal-Mart-Financial Statement & Data Analysis

Introduction

Walmart and Amazon have been two competitive retail business company over the years. An analysis of the two companies over a ten-year horizon highlights Walmart on a better provision of value on its stocks than Amazon. It is in attribute to the uniform dividend payout and growth on its share price.

Over the forty years, Walmart has been in operation; its dividend payout has been increasing. Currently, its dividend yield is at 3.03 %. Its price earnings ratio which ranges between 13.3 -18.2 over past decades highlight share worth investing in the long term. Over the next two years, Walmart plans to put $2.5 B investment in employment and $ 2 B in the electronic commerce industry. The investment will have an adverse impact on it earning, although it will yield significant returns after the two years of operation. Walmart is highly resourceful not only on infrastructure but also capital. The customer outreach gets support from the buyer`s power and a management team that’s fully focused to grow the firm into a model combining brick-and-mortar store with the electronic commerce.

Amazon.inc has had incomparable triumph over the years, over the past decade the company has its share of ups and downs. From an investment perspective, the current investment strategies on international market investment and expansions programs such as Prime Now and Logistics have placed it in an attractive position on the market. The launch of Prime will cushion Amazon on its less yielding products such as Fire Phone and Amazon Destination. By the year 2020, Amazon is estimated to grow up to $46 B from its current position of $ 7B.

  1. BUSINESS MODEL

2.1 Walmart

 Walmart is placed in the market as a discounting retailing company operating chains of stores, supermarkets, warehouse and the famous Sam’s Club it also runs websites such as samsclub.com and Walmart.com. Its operations within the 27 countries are under different names, in the U.S it operates as Walmart and Asda in the UK, forming the major markets. On the minority market it operates in Seiyu located in Japan and India has Best Price. Operating over 11000 retail units and e-commerce platform it operates big within the retailer industry and employees a large group, a recognition earned over a long period in operation.

Its core strategy is to be a price leader, invest in differentiating on access, be competitive on assortment and deliver a great experience. Under the leadership of Doug McMillon as the current president Walmart upholds on its mission statement as a move for improving people live through enabling saving of money. It strategies on bringing its stores together, passing its everyday low cost to its customers as a control on its expenses

2.2 Amazon Inc.

Amazon has grown within the retail industry to become the world largest online retailer. The growth is attributed to its extension in the global presence and not only focusing its operation in North America. Within the marketplace, it operates websites such as amazon.com, in the UK as Amazon co.uk, Amazon.inc, amazon co.jp and Amazon de (Research, 2016). Amazon Company started as a book retailer operating online, diversifying into sale of other products and sales categories over the years and developing its business model along with its growth. Its inventory is maintained and sold through two platforms commission based platform on third party retailers and its online platform. Subscription within Amazon is through prime services as well as a small electronic product line. Prime offers a variety of content such as music, web series, and videos. It has also expanded its Logistics; it is in an aim to shrink its dependency on some operations

First trading shares in 1996 after establishment in the year 1994 by Jeff Bezos who is the current board chair and CEO of the company, later reincorporated in 1996. It holds a mission to become Earth`s most client-centric company. It is guided by its four core principles and aims at becoming a consumer-centric company. To achieve this, it improves its principles: a customer obsession, a passion for invention, an excellence commitment to its operations and thinking on the long term goal.

  1. Operating characteristics

    3.1     Revenue Outlook

Just marked its 20th anniversary Amazon has strategically gained a market share within the United States and in the UK and India as minority share contributors. Most of its investments go towards growth through raising of debt and utilization of retained earnings. The company since inspection has never released any dividends as it fails to focus its growth strategy on profits. In the fiscal year 2015 it generated $107.0 billion in sales. Of total revenue generated the North America share was $ 63.7 billion representing 59% of the total. The International market generated $35.4 billion at 33% of the total. The rest $7.9 billion a 7% share of the total was contributed by the Amazon Web Service (AWS) division. 2015 thus became the first year for Amazon to split its revenue segment share (Amazon., 2015).

Walmart-the world`s largest retailer during the fiscal year of 2015 with a revenue of $485.7 billion, comprising mainly of $482.23 billion net sales. The sales distributed among its major three segments: Walmart United States, Sam`s Club and the Walmart International, The U.S segment had net sales of $288.0 billion, Walmart International segment operating in 26 countries outside U.S has net sales worth $136.2 billion. The Sam`s club operating as a membership-only warehouse club and as samsclub.com contributed $58.0 billion of the net sales. The major segment contributing to its revenue includes Grocery at 56%, Health and Wellness segment at 11%, the Entertainment stood at 10%, Hardline and Apparel were at 16% and Home was at 7%. (Walmart, 2015) The company trades as “WMT.” at the (NYSE) New York Stock Exchange.

    3.2 Competitive factor

The two companies have grown within the years to a competitive market but still manage to be the two leading giants. Its brick and motor stores allows Walmart to stand out among competition and will continuously be the most preferential retail store for most homes.  There store to provide an attribute that beats Amazon in its retail market as customers get a physical experience permitting them to have a feel and touch of the products, immersed in brand experiences and sales contacts engagement. Moreover to the physical distribution through stores, Walmart is aggressively investing in e-commerce platforms and better customer experience through sales improvement, operations, and customer services. Through programs such as EDLP focusing commitment to price leadership and price philosophy which lowers prices to customers on a daily basis.  EDLC controls expenses thus saving on costs and passed to customers. Walmart distribution facilities consist of 102 operational self-owned, two under by third party operator’s ownership, six leased properties, and 24 under third party lease.

Amazon acknowledges competition from single entrance company to alliances. Walmart as a competitor falls on the online, offline and multichannel retailer. As on Amazon competitive edge are publishes on its online store, the web search engine along with social networks. In an aim to beat the competition, it’s in adoption of new and improved technologies which include search, web attributes and computing services infrastructure. Thus Amazon can lock in customers with potential and with restrictive terms, devote its technological resource on, structure, fulfillment, and adverse marketing.

3.3. Risk factor

The number one and most common factor faced by the two companies is on exchange loss. With both companies trading on the international market, the loss is inevitable. The retail industry is not limited to the local economic and political risk. Other risks within the industry include government regulation, business licensing and limited fulfillment and technology infrastructure. Walmart further in its 2015 report acknowledges that data and privacy risk, as well as supply chain and third party risk, may also affect the retail business operations.

4 Employees

Due to the seasonal factor Amazon employee’s dropped to 230,800 on full time during the 2015 financial year. To curb the falling employee number Amazon opted for independently contracted contractors and temporary personnel to supplement its workforce (Amazon., 2015). Employee relation with the company is maintained at a suitable level. Walmart has approximately 2.2 million employees worldwide. It also maintains a large number of associates in each operational year. The company maintains its relationship with its associates is good (Walmart, 2015).

  1. Investment strategies

Over the 2015 financial year, Walmart investors faced a dilemma due to the short-term investment strategy and adoption to environmental changes within the retail industry. On the same year, the company issued a negative guidance, highlighting unpredictable business performance merits, revenue was low as operational cost rose. The expenses increase was forecasted to be by $1.2 B and $1.5B in the fiscal year 2016 and 2017 respectively. Further disappointment on the Walmart investor was due to its additional capital expenditures of $ 23.4B on store improvement and a $2 B electronic commerce investment over the coming years since 2015. The investors got skeptic about the company’s future low-cost over the 2015 financial year selling the stocks they held causing a 40% stock loss of its value over the past years. Its strong basics and statement of financial position along with an enduring strategy well laid out by the management has enabled the company to become a compelling factor on a ten-year investment horizon. Currently, the company offers existing permission allowing value investors to purchase a premium dividend thus paying stock at a very lucrative price (Walmart, 2016).

Investments within Amazon are directed towards technological advancement.  The company believes that technological progress improves their customer interaction on the internet as speeds have improved as well as cutting down on processing costs.  To gain a larger market share the Amazon digital platform has provided a membership service with the inclusion of more than video streaming. The platform is a multi-product incorporating free shipping and two free delivery.

  1. Ratio Analysis

Profitability ratios

Measures the ability of the business to generate considerable profits from its shareholders, communicating the financial performance of the business. The gross profit margin ratio highlights the revenue as a percentage available to cover not only operations but also other expenditures, Amazon Gross profit stood at 33.04 % an improvement from 2014, while Walmart was at 24.58% which was a deterioration from 2014 financial year. Operating profit margin is calculated as operating income divided by revenue; Walmart had a higher operating profit at 5 .04% a drop from 2014 compared to 2 % for Amazon which was a growth from 2014 that was less than 1%. The Net profit margin is calculated as the net income as a factor of revenue, Amazon stood 0.56 % while Walmart was at 3.07% highlighting an almost stable margin on the net profit margin. The Return of Equity after tax stood at 18.24% for Walmart and 4.45% for Amazon, highlighting a wide margin between the two companies. Although Walmart had dropped 2% from the previous year, Amazon grew with the 2% from 2% on the previous year. The return on asset for Amazon stood at 0.91% while that of Walmart stood at 7.36%.

Conclusion

Walmart has potential to develop distribution centers and small integrated store hybrids reducing its costs on operations over coming years. Enabling Walmart competes against Amazon supply channel and vast networks on delivery providing closeness to clients. Amazon earning continue to shrink against Walmart’s revenue as it spends more on capital expenditure. Walmart further utilizes scale and price competitiveness to ease its transition into the multi-channel distribution. Defiantly Amazon needs to replicate Walmart model, transforming itself into a multi-channel retail distributor. As the two companies invest within the market will see a change in its profitability ratio as they grow their sales and revenues.

References

Amazon. (2015). Annual Report . . SEC Form 10-K, 1-78.

https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1018724/000101872416000172/amzn-20151231x10k.htm

Research, Z. I. (2016, Octomber 28). AMZN: AMAZON.COM INC Stock Quote & Analysis – Zacks.com. Retrieved from Zacks: http://www.zacks.com/stock/quote/AMZN

Walmart. (2015). Annual Report . S. E. C. form 10K, 14-16.

https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/104169/000010416915000011/wmtform10-kx13115.htm

Walmart, I. (2016, Octomber 28). Walmart strategy drives growth and sustainable returns, Plans $20 billion share. Retrieved from Walmart, Inc., : http://news.walmart.com/news-archive/2015/10/14/walmart-strategy-drives-growth-andsustainable-returns-plans-20-billion-share-repurchase-program-over-two-years.

 

Appendices

Amazon Ratio calculation

Gross profit margin = 100 × Gross profit ÷ Net sales
= 100 × 35,355 ÷ 107,006 = 33.04%

Operating profit margin = 100 × Income from operations ÷ Net sales
= 100 × 2,233 ÷ 107,006 = 2.09%

Net profit margin = 100 × Net income (loss) ÷ Net sales
= 100 × 596 ÷ 107,006 = 0.56%

ROE = 100 × Net income (loss) ÷ Total stockholders’ equity
= 100 × 596 ÷ 13,384 = 4.45%

ROA = 100 × Net income (loss) ÷ Total assets
= 100 × 596 ÷ 65,444 = 0.91%

Walmart ratio calculations

Gross profit margin = 100 × Gross profit ÷ Net sales
= 100 × 117,630 ÷ 478,614 = 24.58%

Operating profit margin = 100 × Operating income ÷ Net sales
= 100 × 24,105 ÷ 478,614 = 5.04%

Net profit margin = 100 × Consolidated net income attributable to Walmart ÷ Net sales
= 100 × 14,694 ÷ 478,614 = 3.07%

ROE = 100 × Consolidated net income attributable to Walmart ÷ Total Walmart shareholders’ equity
= 100 × 14,694 ÷ 80,546 = 18.24%

ROA = 100 × Consolidated net income attributable to Walmart ÷ Total assets
= 100 × 14,694 ÷ 199,581 = 7.36%

Google Inc Financial Analysis

Analysis of Wal-Mart and Target

Question

Using your current work organization (or an organization of interest) and a second organization in the same industry as the subject matter, research the elements of business, compare and contrast the two selected organizations, and prepare an APA formatted paper that:

  • Analyzes the basic legal, social, and economic environment in which the organizations operate
  • Analyzes the managerial, operational, and financial issues impacting the organizations including: ?Company Culture and Performance

Promotion Policies

Strategic Decisions Making

Decision-Making Style

?Management Style

Leadership Style

Communication Style

Use of SWOT Tool

Operations Strategy Framework

  • Assesses how the overall management teams perform in terms of the four functions of management.

  • Identifies and explains the strong points of the managers.

  • Identifies and explains areas in which improvements are needed.

Sample paper

Analysis of Wal-Mart and Target

Abstract

The macro environment consists of factors such as social, economic, legal and political factors that fundamentally impact firms. Firms have limited options when it comes to dealing with the macro environment factors.  Other factors which may fundamentally impact the firms relates to the micro environment. These are factors for which the firm has total control. Some of these factors relates to management, operations and financial decisions that managers make. The management style and the leadership style employed impacts the firms’ performance. Managers are critical in determining the performance of the organization. This paper will assess the elements of leadership and management at Wal-Mart and Target Corporation.

A number of basic legal, social and economic environment factors impact Wal-Mart. Retail companies such as Wal-Mart operate within a macro environment which encompass factors that the firm cannot alter or change in any way. The retailers’ legal environment is mainly comprised of food safety regulations, employment regulations, and tax laws. Walmart and Target are also required to abide by state as well as federal laws governing companies. For instance, the retail stores must conform to state and federal minimum wage requirements. The retailers’ social environment comprise of consumers from different social backgrounds. This is because the U.S. is a cosmopolitan nation, comprising of shoppers from different ethnic backgrounds. The prevailing economic conditions impact consumer spending and consequently the demand for goods at Wal-Mart (Walmart, 2013). This also applies for Target.

Wal-Mart’s culture is based on four beliefs which include: “service to customers, respect for the individual, striving for excellence, and acting with integrity” (Walmart, n.d). In 2015, Wal-Mart’s performance stagnated compared to 2014. The company made a profit of 16.36 billion compared to 2014 when it made a profit of 16.02 billion (Walmart, 2015). Target’s maintains a corporate culture that values and respects “the individuality of all team members and guests” (Target, n.d). Both retailers maintain a culture that values individuals and respects their differences. Target made a net revenue of 2.45 billion in 2015, a slight decline in profits recorded in 2014 as 2.69 billion (MarketWatch, 2016).  Wal-Mart promotes employees based on the following three criteria. First, an employee should have earned an above-average performance rating. Second, an employee must have worked at the retailer for a minimum period of one year. Third, the employee must be willing to work in a different location. Target Corporation promotes employees based on their performance.

Strategic decision making at Wal-Mart is carried out by division managers which is similar to Target’s strategic decision making process. Wal-Mart employs a hierarchic decision making style whereby those in higher positions exclusively make decisions. At Target Corporation, the decision making approach used is integrative in nature. In this type of decision making style, employees contribute towards making decisions. The company may also analyze customer’s opinions in making decisions. Wal-Mart employs a transactional management style. This is characterized by the tendency to promote high performance employees and the strong relationship it maintains with suppliers. The management style at Target can be described as participative style.

Authoritarian leadership is evident at Wal-Mart. Those in higher positions have exclusive decision making powers. Division managers at Wal-Mart decide the direction each division takes. Target Corporation embraces participative leadership where each employee is entitled to voice his or her own opinion. At Target Corporation, there is more horizontal communication since employees at different levels maintain close relationships. Vertical communication also exists between the employees and the senior management. Vertical communication is dominant at Wal-Mart especially between employees at different levels. Horizontal communication occurs among employees at the same level. Both retailers employ SWOT Tool to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats facing them. The operations strategy framework for Wal-Mart involves selling at low prices while moving large volume of merchandise. Target’s operations strategy framework employs an integrated cost leadership approach.

The overall management team for both retailers has had exemplary performance in the four areas of management which include: planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. Planning involves making preparations to accommodate future events that may impact the business. Organizing means getting the available resources ready to cater to any present and future events. Directing involves establishing an effective work environment as well as developing opportunities for supervision, disciplining, scheduling, and motivation of employees. Both retailers have developed opportunities for these. Controlling is the fourth function which entails establishing performance standards and reviewing the past performance against set targets. Both retailers have established control mechanisms.

The strong points of managers at Wal-Mart can be described as unmatched scale of operations. The company has risen to become the largest in the world in terms of revenue. The large scale of operations for Wal-Mart enables it to obtain huge trade discounts. Wal-Mart is known for its cost leadership strategy which has popularized it across various countries. The retailer maintains strong influence over its suppliers. Another strong point for the managers is the application of information system and a strong presence in the international market. One of the strong points for managers at Target is strong brand name for the company that is highly respected by the customers. The company has a positive image among customers which is good for the future. The managers present Target as a fun place where families can go for shopping. This translates to strong brand loyalty.

Wal-Mart can improve in several areas. First, there is need to change its business model. The retailer’s business model is based on low pricing and moving high volume of merchandise. Wal-Mart also needs to improve its investment strategy. This comes after it retreated from some of the markets it had entered such as Germany and South Korea. This business model has been copied by online retailers such as Amazon which sell merchandise at a much cheaper price. Target needs improvement in several areas. First, its business model needs to be restructured from the supercenters concept to smaller convenience stores. Currently, majority of shoppers prefer neighborhood stores which are smaller in size. Target is yet to fully reap the benefit of online retailing. The retailer has been slow compared to others such as Amazon and Wal-Mart. Target should also expand operations to cover different segments such as financial services.

References

MarketWatch. (2016). Target Corporation.    http://www.marketwatch.com/investing/stock/tgt/financials

Target. (n.d). Culture. https://corporate.target.com/careers/culture

Walmart. (2013). Walmart economic and customer insights report – Q1 2013. Retrieved from             http://corporate.walmart.com/_news_/walmart-facts/customer-trends/

Walmart. (2015). Walmart 2015 annual report. Retrieved from             http://s2.q4cdn.com/056532643/files/doc_financials/2015/annual/2015-annual-report.pdf

Walmart. (n.d). Working at Walmart. Retrieved from http://corporate.walmart.com/our-    story/working-at-walmart

 

https://samplepapers.us/the-abc-shoe-company-wants-to-use-supply-chain-management-to-help-move-the-product-running-shoes-through-production-and-on-to-customers/

Wal-Mart-One -Real-Time Case

Wal-Mart

There are a number of weaknesses that Wal-Mart is currently facing. Currently, Wal-Mart is facing a number of legal lawsuits which could impact its financial position in the near future. In most of the legal proceedings, the company is forced to make accruals for the ongoing cases which impact its financial position. For instance, the company is currently engaged in a lawsuit with the Braun/Hammel as the plaintiff. In 20006, Wal-Mart was forced to pay $ 78 million after losing a lawsuit filed by a former employee (“Walmart,” 2016). Another weakness is that Wal-Mart’s business model can easily be copied by other firms. Wal-Mart lacks a unique competitive differentiator from other companies apart from its large business size. Wal-Mart is facing stiff competition from other stores such as Kmart and Target. The home consumer sales segment of Wal-Mart is also facing stiff competition from small dollar stores such as Dollar General and Family Dollar. Wal-Mart charges low prices for their products which leads to a low profit margin for each item sold. Lastly, Wal-Mart has a high employee turnover rate partly due to low compensation.

In the recent period, Wal-Mart introduced the neighborhood store format that is basically a chain of grocery stores. These grocery stores bridge the gap between supercenters and discount stores. The new neighborhood format stores does not run counter to the cost-cutting strategy employed in traditional stores. Neighborhood store format is meant to increase sales growth by diversifying in different products. According to Walmart (2015), the new neighborhood market format contributed to about 6 percent of the total sales growth recorded in the company in 2015. Although service departments like neighborhood stores are attributed with high labor costs, Wal-Mart has been able to offset these costs. Neighborhood market provides basic grocery operations in addition to an assortment of foods which consumers can carry to cook at home. Such foods have low costs to the company. Also, Wal-Mart provides ready-to-eat foods at these stores. These foods have little costs in terms of storage and other costs. Other foods are self-service and need only be heated. This reduces running costs for these stores.

There are a number of challenges that Wal-Mart faces in its international expansion strategy. Wal-Mart has already experienced some of these challenges, as evidenced in the poor international revenue growth of 1% recorded in 2013 (“Trefis Team,” 2014). As the company expands, it is exposed to global economic conditions in overseas countries. For instance in Mexico, the company recorded low sales in 2014 following a slowdown of the economy. Another challenge lies in understanding consumer buying decisions and preferences in international markets. For example in the U.S., low prices attract consumers to Wal-Mart. However in places such as China, Wal-Mart has experienced problems understanding the local’s buying decisions as they are not entirely driven by price (“Trefis Team,” 2014).

Wal-Mart also faces intense competition in foreign countries. Currently, local stores in foreign countries have copied Wal-Mart’s model. Since these foreign stores have a better understanding of consumer behavior and preferences, they are better placed at beating the competition. Difficulties in understanding the local culture have also had a negative impact on Wal-Mart’s international stores. For instance in Germany 2006, the store’s management required salespersons to give customers a smile. This was however interpreted as flirting especially if it came from a lady directed to a male customer (Landler & Barbaro, 2006).

 

References

Walmart. (2015). 2015 Annual Report. Retrieved from:                 http://s2.q4cdn.com/056532643/files/doc_financials/2015/annual/2015-annual-report.pdf

Landler, M., & Barbaro, M. (2006, Aug. 2). Wal-Mart Finds That Its Formula Doesn’t Fit Every Culture.        The New York Times.

Trefis Team. (2014, April 2). Challenges Wal-Mart Faces In Mexico and China. Forbes.

walmart marketing research paper

Walmart marketing research paper-Mkt 100

 Walmart marketing research paper

Wal-Mart is a multinational retail corporation dealing in warehouse stores and discount departmental stores. The retail corporation has its headquarters in the United States, in the Arkansas state. Walmart focuses on giving customers the best value for their money by providing quality products at low prices, and with outstanding customer service. This sets Wal-Mart apart from the rest of the competition.

Walmart’s unique selling preposition is a focus on “everyday low prices” (EDLP) while delivering quality products to customers (“Walmart,” 2014). The retail corporation stocks a broad assortment of products such as national brands and local merchandise that reflects the need of consumers in the area of operation. The company focuses on an “everyday low cost” strategy that aims at keeping costs low. This enables Wal-Mart to sell at relatively low prices compared to other retailers in the market (“Walmart,” 2014).

Walmart has a number of marketing objectives. The retail corporation seeks to deliver locally relevant products to customers at low prices. This can also be seen as marketing segmentation where various stores across the world will stock locally relevant merchandise. Wal-Mart also seeks to expand its product delivery channels to include e-commerce (“Walmart,” 2014). This means that the retail store will integrate digital and physical platforms to reach out to as many consumers as possible. Online stores will appeal to consumers who prefer shopping online. Secondary research was conducted by reviewing Walmart’s 2014 annual report.

To sum up, USP may be defined as the distinct value or characteristic of a product that enables Walmart to increase its market share (Steinhardt, 2010). Marketing objectives highlights the active steps the retail store has taken to achieve a unique selling preposition.

SWOT Analysis

Strengths

  1. Cost leadership in the retail business
  2. Expansion into the international market
  3. Stocks a wide range of merchandise
  4. Established brand name
  5. Logistical and supply chain capabilities

Weaknesses

  1. High employee turnover
  2. The retailer has faced a number of labor related lawsuits
  3. Some stores are crowded
  4. Increase in expenses may force the retail store to adjust prices

Opportunities

  1. The opportunity to attract more customers through online platform.
  2. Walmart’s own label merchandise is gaining acceptance and can boost growth
  3. Growth opportunities in emerging markets
  4. Growth in operating income in 2014.

Threats

  1. High competition from other retailers
  2. Increase in commodity prices
  3. High competition from online stores
  4. Slow growth in developed and developing markets experienced 2014 (Tabuchi & Abrams, 2014).

Walmart supply chain and operational system aims at enhancing the everyday low prices model. As such it is important to use optimized transportation routes which can enable a business achieve high efficiencies in the supply chain (Tabuchi & Abrams, 2014). Mechanizing all the distribution centers and stores can also help in labor cost reduction. Outside vendors may be costly so it is advisable to do everything in-house.

The company’s pricing strategy is in line with the company’s pricing objective. The company seeks to become the price leader in the industry by charging lowest possible prices (Tabuchi & Abrams, 2014). The company’s objective is to deliver a variety of merchandise to consumers at low prices. A SWOT analysis is an important tool used in determining the internal strengths and weaknesses and the external opportunities and threats facing a company (Ferrell & Hartline, 2011). The importance of describing the supply chain and pricing strategy is to show how the company integrates the information to its decision making using the SWOT analysis.

References

Ferrell, O. C., & Hartline, M. D. (2011). Marketing strategy. Australia: South-Western Cengage Learning.

Steinhardt, G. (2010). The product manager’s toolkit: Methodologies, processes, and tasks in       high-tech product management. Heidelberg: Springer.

Tabuchi, H., & Abrams, R. (2014, Nov. 13). After a Bump in Sales, Walmart Braces for a            Competitive Holiday Season. The New York Times.

Walmart, (2014). Annual Report. Retrieved from             http://stock.walmart.com/files/doc_financials/2014/Annual/2014-annual-report.pdf