Message from Sam Walton
Another very excellent report was just released for our third quarter ended October 31, 1974. Sales totaled $59,462,000, up 41.2 percent. Profits after taxes were $2,397,000, up 40.5 percent.
We’re in good shape for the first nine months with cumulative sales totaling $162,000,000, up 444 percent, and net profit $5,943,000, up 47.5 percent.
Our Wal-Mart program continues to be viewed with amazement, envy, and appreciation by our competition, stockholders, and those who follow us in the investment banking field.
We’ve just returned from an interesting meeting in New York, arranged and hosted by our friend, Walter Loeb, head retail analyst of Morgan Stanley Investment Banking Company. It was most informative and attended by several of the leading institutions and bankers in the country. A number of these people already own Wal-Mart stock and have followed our progress diligently. Others there, hopefully, will become stockholders at some point in the future.
They were most complimentary of our Company and our record to date. I have the strong conviction that we’ll enjoy good support from these people as our Company continues to grow and expand.
In spite of the present recession, our sales trend…although down from previous levels…is still strong. At the end of nine months, we’re up 11 percent in old stores, and I feel we’ll still be able to maintain an increase in this last but most important quarter.
It appears now that our Wal-Mart team is within reach of almost all goals that we projected last year for 1974. We should reach our $235,000,000 sales projection, a 40 percent increase in sales, and a corresponding increase in profits. Our inventory control has been real tough, but thanks to the work of everyone in the stores, our Budget Control Department, we know we can approach year-end inventory on budget, up no more than 33 percent, with sales up 40 percent…and that will be a record of which to be proud!
Yes…we have quite a Company! As I stated this week in New York, it is one composed of exceptionally interested, enthused, and dedicated people, all determined to achieve our Wal-Mart program and make it totally the best retail chain in the United States. More and more, our long range sales goal of one billion dollars by 1981 looks attainable and entirely likely as we build a broader base, increase competence of all management levels, and create a Company and program that is not only interesting and challenging for all of us but also creates good benefits and economic security for all families. Our policy of being fair and honest with each other must continue at every level. Nothing can stop Wal-Mart if we can maintain this team spirit, morale, and continue to work together. THAT is the unbeatable combination! Let’s keep the doors open. Let’s not fail to talk to each other when problems arise.
Thanks for your efforts on that excellent third quarter. Let’s dig in and wind up this year with the best results ever. It will be tough, but I’m confident we can do it!