A remarkable story about Walmart’s impressive clout caught my eye. The story discusses how Walmart accounted for as much as 25% of the productivity gains between 1990 and 1999. Here is a scary quote:
Wal-Mart’s influence on the U.S. economy has reached levels not seen by a single company since the 19th-century rise of Standard Oil, economists and historians say … Wal-Mart is the top seller of groceries, jewelry and photo processing. It is creating more of its own brands. Some, such as Ol’ Roy dog food and Equate vitamins, quickly became the USA’s top sellers. It is moving into banking, used car sales, travel and Internet access. It averages 100 million customers a week. That’s 88.5 million more people than U.S. airlines fly in a week.
I’ve always said that the perfect IT job would be to work in Walmarts’ inventory control department. It boasts satallite controlled inventory tracking among other things. Many geeks scream about Microsoft’s might, when maybe they should be screaming about Walmart’s.