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Wal-Mart Failure: An Analysis Essay

Susan Christopherson’s article entitled Barriers of ‘US style’ lean retailing: the case of Wal-Mart’s failure in Germany tackled the situation of one of the largest shopping industries in the United States. Wal-Mart is already part of United States as they continue to support its industry. However, this market had a big problem after they tried to conquer the shopping industry of Germany. Even in the beginning of Wal-Mart in Germany, problems and confusions occurred but they still strived hard to obtain success after the yearly bankrupt of the company.

Nevertheless, despite of its sacrifices, nothing happened for eight years. There are different factors that Christopherson saw within her research about the said company. “Wal-Mart’s exit from the German market is of interest not only because of the company’s size and the global reach of its supply chain, but because it contributes an interesting case to the small but expanding literature on ‘failure’ in international investment (Christopherson, 452). ” Germany and United States is not the same in terms of types of consumers and the market industry.

Wal-Mart became a success within the United States but it suffers in Germany. Christopherson realizes that the culture and ways of shopping of these two countries

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is totally different from one another that show dramatic manifestation to the growth and failure of Wal-Mart on its designated country. Therefore, it can be said that along the problem with finances, handling of firm, and its management, culture definition and realization is a big factor that needs to be considered.

“The failure of Wal-Mart in Germany is attributed to ‘the usual suspects’- labor unions and dour and unresponsive customers who are unwilling to change their old-fashioned shopping habits (454). ” Christopherson’s article is a combination of facts, evidences, examples, and opinions. After she elaborated the facts from her research, the author made some assertions and opinion to make each scenario become well-explained. However, the problem is that because she used to obtain some opinions from all of the cases that she encountered, this article became an opinionated essay and do not portray the facts and visibilities of the study alone.

Therefore, it is being hard to attain the truthfulness of the facts and evidences far from the opinions and assertions of the author. In my own opinion, I can say that the article is good in terms of generating data and evidences towards the issues of the topic. It brings the biggest factors that each reader needs to obtain to be able to analyze and understand the main points, reasons, and manifestation of the failure. I myself understand the reasons of Wal-Mart in general because of this article.

The concepts are well-investigated with proper supporting data. However, along with this proper investigation are the author’s conclusive thoughts in an indirect assertion. Because of this, the readers will believe her self-knowledge findings. In conclusion to this, it can be said that the article proved its theory of investigation. The data and evidences are accurate, true, and responsive in a manner that every reader will understand.

The language and words that the author used are simple and understandable that each reader wanted to have. It is a justification that it is not really important to create highfaluting words or languages to make the article or investigation a better one because the facts and evidences are the most important – as well as the way on how to deliver it.


Christopherson, S. “Barriers to ‘US style’ lean retailing: the case of Wal-Mart’s failure in Germany” Journal of Economic Geography 7 (2007) pp. 451–469

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