31 July 2006 — Bentonville (ARK): The vice-chairman of Wal-Mart stores, Michael Duke, has announced that the company is to sell its German retail division to Metro Group.
Duke said: "As we focus our efforts on where we can have the greatest impact on our growth and return on investment strategies, it has become increasingly clear that in Germany’s business environment it would be difficult for us to obtain the scale and results we desire." He continued: "This sale positions us to increase our focus on the markets where we can achieve our objectives."
Wal-Mart expects to incur a pre-tax loss of approximately $1 billion in Q2 2007 as a result of the transaction. Further details of the sale have not been disclosed.