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Walmart reports strong sales gains in Q1

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Retailer will discontinue Jet.com.

BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Walmart posted strong sales gains across its businesses in the first quarter, with demand driven by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Unprecedented demand for products across multiple categories led to strong top-line results. But certain incremental costs negatively affected operating income, including costs associated with enhanced wages and benefits as well as safety and sanitation.

Walmart U.S. comp sales1 increased 10.0%, led by strength in food, consumables, health & wellness and some general merchandise categories. Walmart U.S. eCommerce sales grew 74% with strong results for grocery pickup and delivery services, walmart.com and marketplace.

Total revenue was $134.6 billion, an increase of $10.7 billion, or 8.6%.

“More than ever, the news this quarter is our amazing associates,” Walmart president and CEO Doug McMillon said in a statement. “They are rising to the challenge to serve our customers and our communities. I’m proud of how they’re adapting and performing. Our omnichannel strategy, enabling customers to shop in seamless, flexible ways, is built for serving the needs of customers during this crisis and in the future.”

Walmart is also discontinuing Jet.com, due to continued strength of the Walmart.com brand, the company said. The company did call the acquisition of Jet.com nearly four years ago critical to the acceleration of it omnichannel strategy.

The company said it was withdrawing its financial guidance for the current fiscal year because of uncertainty about the future course of COVID-19.

“The decision to withdraw guidance reflects significant uncertainty around several key external variables and their potential impact on our business and the global economy, including: the duration and intensity of the COVID-19 health crisis globally, the length and impact of stay-at-home orders, the scale and duration of economic stimulus, employment trends and consumer confidence,” Walmart chief finacial officer Brett Biggs. “Our business fundamentals are strong, and our financial position is excellent. Customers trust us to deliver on our brand promise, and I’m confident in our ability to perform well in most any environment. While the short-term environment will be challenging, we’re positioned well for long-term success in an increasingly omni world.”


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