Sunday, August 14, 2011

Why Walmart will hurt South Africa [Free State Times Business Section]

When Pick n Pay and the supermarkets started in South Africa we were worried that grocers and corner shops would disappear. Many of them did. Walmart is a monster of another order of magnitude altogether. If we let it, it will cannibalise the retail trade, writes Nick van der Leek.

South Africa's income or Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was $357 million in 2010. Walmart's revenue is currently about $422 billion, meaning it's about the 20th-largest economy in the world. Bigger than all of the oil majors, Walmart is the world's largest company by revenue, employing well over two million people, equivalent to the entire labour force of New Zealand, or roughly everyone in the Free State.

If Walmart were a country, its GDP would be larger than three quarters of the world's countries. It would be China's eighth-largest trading partner. The 10th and 20th, 21st and 22nd-richest billionaires in the world all inherited slices of founder Sam Walton's fortune. Undivided, Walton's fortune would make him the world's richest man today.

Rest the rest of the original article.