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Small Town Rules: How Big Brands and Small Businesses Can Prosper in a Connected Economy by Becky McCray, Barry J. Moltz

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Powerhouse Small Town Brands

Walmart

Bentonville, Arkansas: Population 35,000

The most powerful small town brand is also the most controversial: Walmart. Founder Sam Walton grew up during the Depression, in a series of small towns in Oklahoma and Missouri. He learned the discount-retail business with Ben Franklin stores in the 1950s. In 1962, he opened his first Wal-Mart Discount City store in Rogers, Arkansas, which had a population of about 5,700 at the time. Headquarters were established in nearby Bentonville, Arkansas.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., now has 8,900 locations in 30 countries worldwide under 55 different names and revenue of more than $400 billion per year, with an estimated 2 million employees. In addition to retail stores, it has diversified ...

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