Wal-Mart Coming to India

After many months of speculation Wal-Mart has signed an agreement with the Bharti Group to pave the way for Wal-Mart in India. It was rumored that Wal-Mart might work with Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Group, but the Bharti Group got the nod. Of all the press releases and front page headlines about Indian business, this could drastically change the consumer landscape. I’ve seen stats that estimate 95-98% of all goods are currently purchased from mom and pop shops (known as kirana stores). That leaves the Reliance Group and the Future Group (led by Kishore Biyani) to round out the big 3 players in the retail segment. Although, the news was big in India, a quick check of some American financial websites (cnnfn.com, marketwatch.com, usatoday.com) barely gave it press. Instead, Wal-Mart suffered a 0.1% drop in same-store sales which triggered a sell-off on the NYSE and Nasdaq.

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