Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Wal-Mart's Micro-Mini Opportunity (Now opening convenience stores?)
Daily Finance ^ | November 11, 2013 | Rich Duprey, The Motley Fool

Posted on 11/12/2013 2:44:45 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

Watch out, 7-Eleven! There just might be a Wal-Mart convenience store opening up next door.

According to an Arkansas news site, the retail giant is testing out a convenience store format next to its corporate headquarters in Bentonville. The Northwest Arkansas Business Journal says the new C-store "will offer customers a quick and easy solution for gas, snacks and beverages, and other staples like milk, bread and eggs."

As Wal-Mart experiments with smaller-format concepts that step away from the previous superstore expansion model it championed, it's drilling down to the most basic level. While this will be something it uses to learn from, it's easy to see the convenience-store format being the next natural progression in store development. It's already accelerating the rollout of small-footprint stores, such as its 42,000-square-foot Neighborhood Market stores and its 14,000-square-foot Walmart Express shops.

The vast majority of the retailer's stores are Supercenters that average 180,000 square feet, but Wal-Mart says it will be opening more smaller stores than Supercenters. Between 2013 and 2014, the discount chain anticipates opening 240 Supercenters, yet will open about 300 of these more compact stores over the same time period.

The average C-store is around 2,750 square feet, according to the Association for Convenience & Retailing, with newer stores going as large as nearly 3,600 square feet, with almost 2,800 square feet dedicated to sales space.

Even if Wal-Mart doesn't shrink to that size, it still represents a remarkable transformation in its direction. Because convenience stores are typically, well, conveniently located, offer extended hours, and stock the basics most people are looking for when they don't want to spend hours doing a week's or month's worth of grocery shopping, they continue to expand at a steady pace.

The industry trade group says the number of C-stores in existence expanded to a record 149,220 at the end of 2012, a 0.7% growth rate over the year before. More than 82% of the stores sell gas and nearly a like amount sell beer, and C-stores account for more than 30% of all the beer sold in the U.S.

As popular as they are, they are also very reliant upon gasoline sales and quarterly results can end up being lumpy. The Pantry, one of the largest C-store chains, with more than 1,500 locations in 13 states, saw store merchandise sales rise 1.3% (up 3.3% excluding cigarettes) despite declines in store traffic, but retail fuel gallons sold comps dropped 4.4% in the quarter.

Conversely, a convenience store chain like TravelCenters of America , which operates fewer than 250 facilities, saw a near 4% rise in retail fuel sale volumes, yet revenues were essentially flat year over year, although its margins jumped 7.5% despite being negatively affected by aggressive sales tactics from rivals who tried to gain market share.

As Wal-Mart continues to deal with a sluggish economy, a bleak employment picture, and record numbers of people on food stamps, becoming an even more convenient destination for shoppers could help bolster flagging sales. It generated profits in the second quarter ahead of 2012's numbers, but still came in below analyst expectations and ended up lowering full-year guidance.

Of course, simply because it's opening up one test store doesn't mean it will become a full-fledged C-store operator. The company has a history of testing ideas to see what can be learned, such as its recently ended test of a subscription commerce service that began less than a year ago. It's taking the lessons learned from the experience and applying it to its traditional retail business.

I imagine the convenience store is being launched with the same mind-set, though I believe there's a lot more traction for this format then in a grocery-basket-a-month club.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; US: Arkansas
KEYWORDS: economy; foodstamps; retail; walmart

1 posted on 11/12/2013 2:44:45 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Oh Mercy! Ah-Poo is very, very frightened at this particular point in time...


2 posted on 11/12/2013 2:46:11 AM PST by Gaffer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet
Title edit: (Now opening convenience stores?)

Why the question mark?

3 posted on 11/12/2013 2:53:35 AM PST by NautiNurse (Obama sends U.S. Marines to pick up his dog & basketballs. Benghazi? Nope.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gaffer

“Ah-Poo is very, very frightened at this particular point in time...”

He should be; my town just opened its first 7-11, and a neighboring town opened one within a mile, and they are better deals than the family-owned Indian covenience stores that have sprung up all over the area in recent years (replacing traditional American delis). If Wal-Mart displaces even the 7-11s, there won’t be many American jobs lost - they don’t hire very many around here (northern NJ).


4 posted on 11/12/2013 2:55:17 AM PST by kearnyirish2 (Affirmative action is economic war against white males (and therefore white families).)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Gaffer

A huge opportunity for Wal-Mart. The markups in these stores is astronomical. It never ceases to amaze me whenever I buy gasoline at one of these stores, the number of folks buying junk, lottery tickets, beer, and so forth.

Impulse buying, I believe it’s called.


5 posted on 11/12/2013 2:55:42 AM PST by abb
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: NautiNurse

Reading the article should answer your question.


6 posted on 11/12/2013 2:58:52 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet ("Many on the left see faith & family as oppressive, the right sees them as indispensable." Palin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: abb

End-of-the-day decision fatigue

Wiki “decision fatigue”

It explains why the tards drive so horrendously bad at the end of the day, as well


7 posted on 11/12/2013 3:03:16 AM PST by warchild9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet
Methinks this might be bad newz for certain immigrant groups. Just ask Plugs.
8 posted on 11/12/2013 3:03:23 AM PST by cynwoody
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

LOL. It was after reading the article that I didn’t understand your need to edit the title and add a question mark.


9 posted on 11/12/2013 3:05:22 AM PST by NautiNurse (Obama sends U.S. Marines to pick up his dog & basketballs. Benghazi? Nope.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: NautiNurse

Wal-Mart has only built the one small C-Store in Bentonville so far, but the article discusses whether they will follow-on with multiple units.


10 posted on 11/12/2013 3:06:52 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet ("Many on the left see faith & family as oppressive, the right sees them as indispensable." Palin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: abb

See # 4; 7-11 is already making a play for those dollars in my area. I wouldn’t call it “impulse buying”; I believe it is more related to the growing phenomenon of unmarried, childless young adults buying (their version of) staples on their way to & from work. Who will cook meals every day for just themselves or maybe one other person?

In my area these Indian convenience stores have replaced many traditional American delis, and gas stations bought by Asians have replaced their mechanics’ bays with convenience stores (there actually is a caste angle to this; the Indians that are in the merchant class are not the same as those that fix cars, so they either hire American mechanices or convert the bays to a store). One thing you can be assured of: air for your tires will never again be free. Another thing (not so certain): The bathroom is probably not available.


11 posted on 11/12/2013 3:08:16 AM PST by kearnyirish2 (Affirmative action is economic war against white males (and therefore white families).)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: kearnyirish2
One thing you can be assured of: air for your tires will never again be free. Another thing (not so certain): The bathroom is probably not available.

http://www.wikihow.com/Use-an-Indian-Bathroom

The market will decide. Unless the God-damned USG gets involved.

12 posted on 11/12/2013 3:13:00 AM PST by cynwoody
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Wow — they’ll be able to undersell the other convenience stores easily!


13 posted on 11/12/2013 3:13:25 AM PST by BlessedBeGod (Democrats are Cruz'n for a Bruisin' in 2016. / Obama=Unspeakable Audacity)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet
the article discusses whether they will follow-on with multiple units.

Do you mean the 300 new WalMart compact stores planned to open through 2014?

14 posted on 11/12/2013 3:37:41 AM PST by NautiNurse (Obama sends U.S. Marines to pick up his dog & basketballs. Benghazi? Nope.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: kearnyirish2
In my area these Indian convenience stores have replaced many traditional American delis, and gas stations bought by Asians have replaced their mechanics’ bays with convenience stores (there actually is a caste angle to this; the Indians that are in the merchant class are not the same as those that fix cars, so they either hire American mechanices or convert the bays to a store).

A regrettable inefficiency, for which they deserve to lose out to WalMart!

15 posted on 11/12/2013 3:40:28 AM PST by cynwoody
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: abb
This is the key factor: record numbers of people on food stamps Walmart is going after Obama's growing inner city crowd. These low information shoppers do not drive so are an untapped market for Walmart. With their freeloader cards they are easy to profit off of, at least until they help themselves to all the convenient free stuff. Many a business venture has failed from targeting Democrat customers.
16 posted on 11/12/2013 3:42:02 AM PST by Reeses
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

cool another place to buy melamine from China!


17 posted on 11/12/2013 3:43:19 AM PST by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: cynwoody

“A regrettable inefficiency, for which they deserve to lose out to WalMart!”

Yeah; I guess they don’t hire people from other castes. An Indian friend that works in a convenience store owned by his family never buys ANYTHING in other stores when we’re out; he tells me the markup is incredible.


18 posted on 11/12/2013 3:49:31 AM PST by kearnyirish2 (Affirmative action is economic war against white males (and therefore white families).)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Nothing beatz Sheetz!

https://www.sheetz.com/


19 posted on 11/12/2013 3:53:36 AM PST by sneakers
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Reeses

“This is the key factor: record numbers of people on food stamps Walmart is going after Obama’s growing inner city crowd. These low information shoppers do not drive so are an untapped market for Walmart.”

I think many of these people ARE driving now (their cars are newer than mine), but I agree that Wal-Mart may be targeting the urban areas. Why not? They made a ton of money targeting white welfare recipients all over the country; their pictures are all over the internet.


20 posted on 11/12/2013 4:12:23 AM PST by kearnyirish2 (Affirmative action is economic war against white males (and therefore white families).)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Walmart could buy it’s own gas distributor in each area for it’s convenience stores and stock it’s shelves from their existing warehouses.

They could really put the hurts to everyone else.


21 posted on 11/12/2013 4:13:57 AM PST by Beagle8U (Free Republic -- One stop shopping ....... It's the Conservative Super WalMart for news .)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Beagle8U

http://murphyusa.com/


22 posted on 11/12/2013 4:16:33 AM PST by abb
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: abb

Can they compete with Wally’s?


23 posted on 11/12/2013 4:27:24 AM PST by Beagle8U (Free Republic -- One stop shopping ....... It's the Conservative Super WalMart for news .)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

I no longer walmart.


24 posted on 11/12/2013 4:31:46 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (FROM MY COLD, DEAD HANDS! BETTER DEAD THAN RED!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Beagle8U

Murphy Oil IS Wally. They’re the gasoline distributor for them, at least here in the South.


25 posted on 11/12/2013 4:37:14 AM PST by abb
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

They located one of these at Tech Square (Georgia Tech). It just opened in August. The kids call it SmallMart.


26 posted on 11/12/2013 4:40:08 AM PST by BelleAl (Proud to be a member of the party of NO! NO more deficit spending and government control!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: abb

Oh OK, I didn’t know that. It’s been quite a few years since I lived down south.


27 posted on 11/12/2013 4:47:04 AM PST by Beagle8U (Free Republic -- One stop shopping ....... It's the Conservative Super WalMart for news .)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: abb

Walmart has a policy of not marking up beyond their set price. The same can of corn, for example, has the same price across all their stores nationwide, regardless of store size. Their computer network and software are geared toward it—it’s all centrally controlled and resupply is based on the nationwide network’s software.

If they apply THAT model then they’ll absolutely kill all these high markup convenience stores.


28 posted on 11/12/2013 4:56:02 AM PST by Alas Babylon!
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: sneakers

Gotta Have A Wawa!

http://www.wawa.com/


29 posted on 11/12/2013 5:06:22 AM PST by AF_Blue ("America is all about speed. Hot, nasty, bad ass speed." - Eleanor Roosevelt, 1936)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

There is no room around here for a C store every corner has a Dollar store or Family Dollar store located there.and More popping up like warts.


30 posted on 11/12/2013 5:08:41 AM PST by bikerman (Obama! if his lips are moving he's lying.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

They put one of these Walmart mini-markets in Julioville, better known as south Fort Worth. I made a visit the other day and the store was packed with EBT baby mommas getting their government purchased handouts.
These Walmart mini-markets are just an expansion of how Walmart gets an ever increasing portion of the government cash.


31 posted on 11/12/2013 5:10:34 AM PST by 9422WMR (: " Tolerance is the virtue of a man who has no convictions".)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: LibLieSlayer

It’s like shopping in Thunderdome: “Two men enter, one man leave.”
I always wear kevlar undershorts when I feel the need to see Wally.


32 posted on 11/12/2013 5:23:32 AM PST by tumblindice (America's founding fathers: All armed conservatives.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: tumblindice

I understand. Sam’s Club is much better... walmart... not so much.


33 posted on 11/12/2013 6:17:05 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (FROM MY COLD, DEAD HANDS! BETTER DEAD THAN RED!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Yeah, but will they provide the little motorized chairs for the folks that “eat too much”?


34 posted on 11/12/2013 6:35:51 AM PST by Minutemen ("It's a Religion of Peace")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: cynwoody; moder_ator

Seriously? You need to use that language?


35 posted on 11/12/2013 7:49:33 AM PST by ansel12 ( Democrats-"a party that since antebellum times has been bent on the dishonoring of humanity.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Alas Babylon!

Actually Wal-Mart’s prices vary greatly from store to store. A good example my family members live about 35 miles away in a small country town with a super Wall-Mart. They drive all the way to the Wal-Mart in my area because the grocery items are noticeably cheaper. When my cousin had a baby recently she bought all of her diapers and other baby items there too because her local store also had much higher prices especially on diapers. Wal-Mart researches their pricing and they will keep them as high as a market can stand especially in areas with little competition.


36 posted on 11/12/2013 10:00:35 AM PST by cquiggy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: bikerman

There is no room around here for a C store every corner has a Dollar store or Family Dollar store located there.and More popping up like warts.

That is exactly why Wal-Mart is trying to go with these mini stores. Here in Kentucky Dollar General Stores are popping up like flower seeds. Wal-Mart is losing customers to these small country town Dollar Generals because people are shopping there and going to Wal-Marts less. I am anxious to see Wal-Mart open hundreds of these stores and then fail. Everyone has been in a Wal-Mart at least once and their stores are huge and they have everything. Now picture walking into a Wal-Mart mini store. Your first impression would have to be that they don’t have anything after getting the image in your head of a full size Wal-Mart you wouldn’t possibly be able to shop in the mini. Contrast that with walking in a Dollar General Store they have always been small stores packed to the ceiling with simply priced goods. Their store buildings look small but when you walk inside they appear to have a tremendous amount of goods. I want to see how Wal-Mart can counter this I really don’t think they can.


37 posted on 11/12/2013 10:15:25 AM PST by cquiggy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: cquiggy

I thought that too but then the local TV station here (conservative journalists) investigated this and found the price of things where the small Walmarts as in the Super Walmart. My small town has one of the smallest Walmarts left in Alabama, and they say the prices are the same, and if we find a price lower at a Super Walmart that is not on sale, they’ll double the difference back to us.


38 posted on 11/12/2013 11:20:11 AM PST by Alas Babylon!
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Bentonville’s ongoing issue lacking of on hand inventory policies if applied to these stores will mean empty shelves in 24 hours. The truck will be on time early sometime next week with three more items of each to stock. LOL


39 posted on 11/12/2013 12:13:29 PM PST by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson