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Case Analysis #2 1) What sources of cost advantage does Wal-Mart rely upon to execute its business-level strategy in the US? Walmart was able to fly under the big company’s radar for a while by putting stores in rural towns. They were able to buy land for cheap and once they opened a store the town could not support another store of similar size. And everyone played a part in keeping the cost down, from owners buying cheap hotel rooms to people taking out their own trash. They wanted to drive the cost down as low as it could possibly get. With suppliers Wal-Mart presented unlimited growth potential due to its size, so Wal-Mart could easily press for a lower price and high quality and suppliers would deliver to keep their business. They…show more content…
And Walmart has always been able to keep a low price from all the in house stuff they do and subbing it out. 3) Do those same sources of cost advantage enable Walmart to achieve a sustainable competitive advantage in China? With a localized demand, localized supply base, and localized distribution in China also provided domestic stores with an edge in establishing a strong regional dominance when foreign retailers found it hard to leverage national presence in a regional market. In China, however, the constraints on a foreign retailers operation directly limited the regional expansion of Walmart stores and the efficient use of distribution centers since they were so spread out. Would have to spend more on distribution costs and given the slow speed of transportation did not enable Walmart to lower its prices. Walmart also faced a problem with lack of an information technology network with suppliers, making purchasing and distribution difficult. Also, consumers in China were very different than those back home, which added pressure to the operational costs and directly threatened its ability to set the price low as possible. People in China did not buy in bulk and that is what Walmart specialized in, so shopping patterns did not fit. Diminished economies of scale and interrupted supply chain meant higher costs in satisfying Chinese consumers. Everything that Walmart thrived in and was able to do to cut costs, they
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