Wal-Mart: 500,000 new jobs worldwide in 5 years

By Chavon Sutton, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said Friday it plans to create 500,000 jobs throughout the world in the next five years, saying there is tremendous opportunity for growth globally.

"We need to recruit the best talent and identify the best talent in our ranks," CEO Mike Duke told analysts and investors at the company's annual shareholder meeting in Fayetteville, Ark. It was not immediately clear how many of the jobs would be created in the United States.

Wal-Mart (WMT, Fortune 500) also announced a new program to repurchase $15 billion of its shares, which replaces a $15 billion repurchase plan announced a year ago. The company said $10.3 billion in stock had been purchased as a result of the prior program.

Hosted this year by Jamie Foxx, Wal-Mart's annual meeting was again a star-studded fanfare. Movie stars and musicians such as Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige, recent "American Idol" winner Lee DeWyze, and Enrique Iglesias entertained shareholders who traveled far and wide for the annual part-pep rally, part-concert.

Duke said growth would not come easily, highlighting such challenges in the next 20 years as higher energy costs, nimble and innovative competitors, and technology.

The CEO also commented on Wal-Mart's low-price strategy, saying a "new era of price transparency," brought on by the advent of mobile technologies, would make it more difficult to maintain its leadership position.

Wal-Mart officials called their international business strong, with Duke saying "It's becoming an even bigger and more important part of our company." He added that more than 60% of the company's new square footage last quarter was in Wal-Mart's international unit.

Sales from the company's international division exceeded $100 billion or about 25% of its $405 billion in total revenue. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 17,683.58 -46.53 -0.26%
Nasdaq 4,991.94 -17.27 -0.34%
S&P 500 2,068.76 -8.02 -0.39%
Treasuries 2.28 -0.11 -4.81%
Data as of 9:19pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 16.94 -0.09 -0.53%
Micron Technology In... 18.32 -0.75 -3.93%
Frontier Communicati... 4.92 0.07 1.44%
Intel Corp 30.04 -0.52 -1.69%
Apple Inc 126.00 -0.44 -0.35%
Data as of 4:00pm ET
Sponsors

Sections

America's biggest coffee chain is getting more expensive on Tuesday after another round of price changes. More

Greece voted by a big margin against Europe's latest bailout offer on Sunday, bringing the country closer to an economic disaster that could lead to its exit from the eurozone. More

Waze, a Google-owned company that builds crowdsourced maps, is testing a new carpool program in Tel Aviv. More

Entrepreneur Guillaume Gauthereau is on a mission to build a 50 to a 100 acre sanctuary in New York to provide refuge to honey bees. More

Building a strong credit score at a young age can save a lot of money down the road. Here's how to do it. More