Walmart Ready to Reveal New Store to Watson Shoppers

New Walmart provides 300 jobs, plus savings on wide selection of merchandise

DENHAM SPRINGS, La., March 29, 2012 – A new Walmart opens next month in Watson, bringing 300 new jobs, savings for local shoppers and an increase in tax revenue to support the area’s economy. Nonprofit organizations will also benefit from the retailer’s ongoing charitable contributions and support for community projects. The Walmart, located at 34025 Highway 16, will be open to customers at 8 a.m., Wednesday, April 11.

“The tax revenue will certainly be welcomed along with the jobs for our citizens,” said Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks. “Another great thing about Walmart is it sparks other commercial development around it like restaurants and other retail stores. I am excited to be welcoming another Walmart location in Livingston Parish.”

Economic Impact Includes 300 New Jobs

The new Watson Walmart will employ approximately 300 associates, according to store manager Frank Schiro. Schiro is a New Orleans native who began his Walmart career in 1997 at a store in Hammond.

“Walmart has always been a great friend to communities, and one of the biggest things they provide is job opportunities for college students,” said Ricks.

Store Designed to Improve Customer Experience

In recent months, Walmart has taken major steps to refresh its stores, merchandising and customer experience. The improvements have all come together in the company’s newest stores, such as the Watson Walmart, with fast service, a friendly shopping experience and clean stores.

The new Walmart features wide aisles, enhanced service and a layout designed to make the shopping experience more convenient for customers. Walmart aligned the departments that customers shop most frequently.

“The layout of the store is easy to navigate, which will save our customers time as they shop for everyday necessities,” said Schiro. “By grouping the products that our customers most often purchase, including health and beauty and pet supplies, we are making one-stop shopping even easier.”

A bright interior color palette creates an inviting shopping experience and helps define the store’s merchandise areas. Lower shelving creates an improved sightline, and directional signage on every aisle helps customers find what they are looking for quickly.

Community Organizations Benefit from Grand-Opening Grants

As part of Walmart’s commitment to the communities in which it operates, grants from the Walmart Foundation will be presented as part of the grand-opening celebration.

Store Design Incorporates Environmentally Friendly Features

The Watson Walmart, like all new Walmart stores, includes energy-efficient technology and environmentally friendly features to reduce energy and water consumption and minimize waste. The store’s skylights harvest daylight and reduce the amount of energy required to light the store by up to 75 percent daily. The cement used in the concrete flooring is made with recycled materials, and the floor’s finish reduces the need for chemical cleaners. The new store also operates a recycling program and will promote sustainable product purchases.

Ribbon-Cutting Celebration 7:30 a.m., April 11

Community and business leaders will join Walmart associates at 7:30 a.m., Wednesday, April 11 for a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony. Students from Live Oak High School will perform, and Schiro and other associates will cut the ribbon to the new store.

About Walmart 
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) serves customers and members more than 200 million times per week at over 10,000 retail units under 69 different banners in 27 countries. With fiscal year 2012 sales of approximately $444 billion, Walmart employs 2.2 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://walmartstores.com, and on Facebook at http://facebook.com/walmart and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart. Online merchandise sales are available at http://www.walmart.com and http://www.samsclub.com.

FACT SHEET
Watson Walmart

Store facts

  • Location: 34025 Highway 16, Denham Springs, La.
  • 156,000-square-foot Walmart
  • Store opens at 8 a.m. Wednesday, April 11, following a 7:30 a.m., ribbon-cutting ceremony
  • Store manager: Frank Schiro
  • Open 24 hours, seven days a week

Store features

  • Full line of groceries, including a bakery, a deli serving fresh food and meal solutions for moms, meat and dairy products, and fresh produce
  • More than 30 merchandise departments such as fabric and crafts, apparel and accessories, a garden center, health and beauty aids, and an expanded electronics department
  • Convenience services include a pharmacy, vision center, liquor and tobacco shop, digital photo processing center, Walmart Connect Center, and a MoneyCenter. Site-to-Store services will have its own space at the front of the store.
  • Leased areas and services include a Subway Restaurant.

Charitable giving

  • Grants from the Walmart Foundation will be presented to area organizations as part of the grand-opening celebration

Employment

  • Store plans to employ approximately 300 associates
  • The average wage at Walmart for full-time hourly associates in Louisiana is approximately $12.50 per hour*
  • Walmart’s benefit program is available to eligible full- and part-time associates and provides a variety of affordable health and well-being benefits including medical insurance with no lifetime maximum. Walmart also offers matching 401(k) contributions of up to 6 percent of pay, discounts on general merchandise for store associates, an Associate Stock Purchase Program and company-paid life insurance. Additionally, eligible associates receive a quarterly incentive based on store performance.

* Average wage taken January 2012. See www.walmartstores.com for details.

###