Wal-Mart may sell German stores

By Anita Awbi

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Wal-mart

Underperforming Wal-Mart Germany is reviewing its operations with a
view to selling some stores, following the closure of three
supermarkets in the country last week.

In an interview with the Welt am Sonntag​ newspaper over the weekend David Wild, president of Wal-Mart Germany, said the firm is currently "examining unprofitable locations"​ and will close them if they are not deemed commercially viable in the long term.

He said some stores are "losing a lot of money"​ while others are performing excellently - facilitating the need for a specific area review.

This comes as the firm sold three underperforming supermarkets last week, in Dusseldorf-Reisholz, Sigmaringen and Muehldorf, leaving 85 hypermarkets open across the country.

Earlier this year Wal-Mart said it would plough €30m into upgrading the remaining stores, but with the review underway this may now be postponed.

The US retailer's presence in Germany is now at an all-time low since entering the market in 1997.

For Wal-Mart International, higher than expected year-end German operating losses came as a disappointment to the company that has seen a shift in its European fortunes. The weakening of the pound and euro added to the negative impact on sales, management said.

However, overall the international section saw a 22.9 per cent rise in 2006's first-quarter net sales to $17.3bn (€13.7bn), bolstered by three major acquisitions during the period, in Japan and Latin America.

Globally Wal-Mart is the leading food retailer with net sales of $312bn, employing 1.5m workers in 15 countries.

Related topics: Market Trends

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