Tag Archives: WalMart

Clothing Keeps Getting Cheaper, and Factory Workers Are Paying the Price | Bloomberg

In April 2013, when the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh crumbled and killed more than a thousand garment workers, Western clothing executives were chastened. They were the ones, after all, who’d been pressuring Bangladesh’s apparel factories to cheaply reproduce runway trends for consumers in the U.S. and Europe who’d grown used to $10 dresses. Following the accident, H&M, Zara, Walmart, Gap, and other major brands announced they’d fund and oversee factory inspections in Bangladesh, demanding improvements from facilities that fell short and cutting off business with those that didn’t get better. Bangladesh, with the help of the United Nations’ International Labour Organization (ILO), created its own inspection program and vowed to shut down unsafe facilities. Better vigilance, everyone figured, would be central to preventing similar accidents from happening again.

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Walmart, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Nestle Donate 6.5M Bottles Of Water To Flint, Mich. Students | Forbes

World’s largest retailer Walmart is joining forces with the three biggest bottled water suppliers in the U.S. to provide enough water to last 10,000 public schoolkids in Flint, Mich. the remainder of the calendar year.

In partnership with Pepsi , Coca-Cola KO and Nestle , the big-box giant will deliver 6.5 million bottles of water, or 176 truckloads a day, to the crisis-stricken city, where all children under the age of 6 were exposed to toxic, lead-tainted water that may cause life-long damage.

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Walmart To Shut 269 Stores In Chain’s First Mass Closing; 16,000 Workers Affected | Forbes

Walmart announced its first ever mass store closing on Friday, with 269 stores worldwide set to close their doors.

Of these closures, 154 are in the U.S., including all of the company’s 102 smallest Walmart Express stores.

The Bentonville, Ark. big-box giant will abandon its Walmart Express format, focusing on existing Supercenters, its growing Neighborhood Market grocery chain and its e-commerce business, according to a statement.

Walmart said 16,000 employees will be affected by this decision, 10,000 of whom are in the U.S.

“More than 95 percent of the closed stores in the U.S. are within 10 miles on average of another Walmart, and the hope is that these associates will be placed in nearby locations,” said Walmart in its Friday news release.

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Walmart Makes Big Fat Online Mistake and Then It Gets Worse | Inc.com

walmart_39269Big online marketing mistakes seem all the rage these days. In late August, Spanish clothing and accessories retailer Zara got into hot water over what appeared to be a yellow Jewish star on a kid’s striped pajama top that looked like prison gear. Then there was Urban Outfitters with the Kent State sweatshirt that sported what looked like bullet holes and blood stains.

When confronted with evidence of what angered people, at least they managed to cleanly remove the offending items. It doesn’t make things all better, but it’s an important first step. If only Walmart had learned that lesson.

The company has just gone through a one-day rollercoaster with marketing stomachs likely still heaving. It all started with Walmart’s Halloween costume. Someone noticed a different subsection on the company’s website: Fat Girl Costumes, as the blog Jezebel reported.

And that started the very-bad-not-so-good day for Walmart’s marketing department. Even as the story was hitting online media and complaints were landing in the company’s social networking accounts–the term “fat girl costumes” apparently hit the top 10 of Twitter trends–things moved slowed at Walmart. Jezebel noted that by 11:15 a.m. eastern, there was still a fat girl costumes section, although there were no items in it.

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Wal-Mart Mexico Bribe Inquiry Silenced | NYTimes.com

Wal-Mart dispatched investigators to Mexico City, and within days they unearthed evidence of widespread bribery. They found a paper trail of hundreds of suspect payments totaling more than $24 million. They also found documents showing that Wal-Mart de Mexico’s top executives not only knew about the payments, but had taken steps to conceal them from Wal-Mart’s headquarters in Bentonville, Ark. In a confidential report to his superiors, Wal-Mart’s lead investigator, a former F.B.I. special agent, summed up their initial findings this way: “There is reasonable suspicion to believe that Mexican and USA laws have been violated.”

The lead investigator recommended that Wal-Mart expand the investigation.

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Wal-Mart Heiress’s Museum a Moral Blight | Bloomberg

But many of the paintings in Crystal Bridges hang in eloquent rebuke to the values of the company that has made the Waltons so very wealthy. Three paintings, in particular, struck me as especially pointed commentaries on the perverse values of Sam Walton’s heirs.

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