Wal Mart FY 2Q17 Earnings Call Notes

Wal-Mart Stores’ (WMT) CEO Doug McMillon on Q2 2017 Results

1.6% comp sales increase

“We exceeded our Walmart U.S. comp sales guidance this quarter, with Walmart U.S. delivering comp sales of 1.6%, driven by a traffic increase of 1.2%. This was our 8th consecutive quarter of positive comp sales and our 7th consecutive quarter of positive traffic.”

Jet will allow us to reach even more customers

“Operating Walmart.com and Jet.com will allow us to reach even more customers and drive a higher level of growth more quickly. One of the things we like about the technology they’ve developed is that it rewards customers in real time with savings on a basket of goods and puts them more in charge of the price they pay. This empowers customers in a way that is true to the spirit of Walmart.”

Jet CEO will be new head of Walmart e-commerce

“Once the acquisition is complete, we look forward to welcoming Marc Lore, current President and CEO of Jet.com. He will join Wal-Mart as our new President and CEO of e-commerce, reporting to me. He will be responsible for both the Walmart and Jet brands in the U.S. Marc is a passionate merchant and innovative thinker who will definitely add value to our business.”

Made advancements on key priorities

” we made advancements in the U.S. on our key priorities to build digital relationships with customers, scale the assortment and expand online grocery. As of June, we have rolled out Wal-Mart Pay nationwide to all stores.”

Brett Biggs

UK comps down 7.5%

“In the U.K., fierce competition and food deflation continue to challenge the market, significantly impacting traffic and comp sales trends. During the quarter, comp sales, excluding fuel, decreased 7.5%. Our strategy remains focused on improving retail basics, simplifying and strengthening the offer through improved availability and assortment discipline, reducing costs through our cost analytics program and driving sales through strategic price investments where we remain committed to the previously announced five-year £1.5 billion price investment.”

Wal Mart at Deutsche Bank Conference Notes

Brett Biggs – Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Humble beginnings in 1962

“We had very humble beginnings. Our first store opening in 1962 in rural Arkansas and we’ve had tremendous growth as you know since then primarily started in rural America, but we knew our customers wanted more from us. So the next part of our evolution was into our membership clubs. So in the early 80s, we started our membership club business and we opened our first Sam’s Club.”

The supercenter was the greatest invention in retail history

“Then began a real transformation for the Company and that was with the supercenter. So our first supercenter opened in 1988 and was probably the greatest invention in retail history and certainly changed the retail landscape in the United States”

Growth is now about more than growing comps and building stores

“Growth used to be just about we talk about building stores or growing comp sales and it looks different today, it’s still about comp sales and it’s still about building stores, but now it’s about mobile e-commerce, it’s about world-class fulfillment capabilities, it’s about developing new services all with the customer in mind.”

The consumer continues to be a mixed bag

“From a consumer standpoint I probably would have said a year ago, I may have said a year ago actually that the consumer was a little bit of a mixed bag. And I don’t think it’s changed significantly over the last six to 12 months and I’ll speak specifically about the U.S. I think that’s where your question was leaning towards the U.S. There are a number of things when you look at it from a metric standpoint, so unemployment is low. I think you have to look through some of the unemployment numbers, unemployment is low, interest rates are low, inflation is low, gas prices are low. And all of that would say the consumer should feel pretty good about where they’re at and I think the consumer feels okay. We know they’re saving more. We know consumers continue to pay down debt and I think some of that you would say as a holdover from 2008, 2009, 2010 where the consumer remembers they didn’t feel as good back then and I think are taking more opportunities to pay down debt and do other things.”

We always invest in price

“Wal-Mart always invests in price, we’re an EDLP retailer that’s what we’re all about. We save people money so they can live better, so we always invest in price. So it’s not an on/off switch with us on price.”

We’re committed to Africa

“South Africa particularly is going through some challenges from a macroeconomic perspective, but we think the team there is making good adjustments in managing the business well. It’s been a bit of a challenging market particularly over the last couple of years from an economic standpoint, but long-term we believe in Africa.”