Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (branded as Walmart) (Public, NYSE: WMT) is an American public corporation that runs a chain of large, discount department stores. It is the world's largest public corporation by revenue, according to the 2008 Fortune Global 500. The company was founded by Sam Walton in 1962, incorporated on October 31, 1969, and listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1972. Wal-Mart is the largest private employer and the largest grocery retailer in the United States. It also owns and operates the Sam's Club retail warehouses in North America.

Walmart operates in Mexico as Walmex, in the United Kingdom as Asda, in Japan as Seiyu, and in India as Best Price. It has wholly-owned operations in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Wal-Mart's investments outside North America have had mixed results: its operations in the United Kingdom, South America and China are highly successful, while it was forced to pull out of Germany and South Korea when ventures there were unsuccessful.

Walmart has been criticized by some community groups, women's rights groups, grassroots organizations, and labor unions, specifically for its extensive foreign product sourcing, low wages, low rates of employee health insurance enrollment, resistance to union representation, sexism, and management efforts to pressure employees to vote for specific parties during national elections. Conversely, others point out that Wal-Mart's rapid growth and logistical efficiency has enabled it to bring lower prices to consumers and more jobs to the communities in which it operates.