If there is a company I dislike as much as Walmart then the winner of that distinction is Amazon. So, I take perverse delight when the two monsters face off in grudge matches.
Wal-Mart is the biggest retailer in the world with $482 billion in annual sales, making it five times as large as its closest rival. But there's one area where the retailer is perpetually beat: ecommerce. Wal-Mart's online sales are a tiny fraction of the size of Amazon's, even though Wal-Mart is five times bigger — and a lot older — than it's ecommerce rival. Wal-Mart's online sales were $12.2 billion in 2014. By comparison, Amazon's were $89 billion. The world's largest retailer is tired of losing to Amazon when it comes to web sales, so it has been pouring billions of dollars into its online operations in recent years. This year, Wal-Mart plans to invest between $1.2 billion and $1.5 billion in its ecommerce business, Wal-Mart Chief Financial Officer Charles Holley told analysts in February. The company will spend even more next year, he said. Wal-Mart has been using the money to make its website more user-friendly, open additional ecommerce fulfillment centers around the US, and expand the number of products available for purchase on its website. Wal-Mart also recently began authorizing store managers to match prices found on Amazon and other websites to better compete with its rivals. And Amazon's growth continues to outpace Wal-Mart's, meaning the retailer is a long way from catching up.
Ah. Poor, poor Walmart. I'm not rooting for Amazon, mind you. I hope the battle gets bloodier and the Bentonvile/Sevil behemoths trash each other, saving Americans billions in the process. Jeff Hess: Have Coffee Will Write.

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