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10 Introduction Wal-Mart is a retailing company founded by Sam Walton and his brother in 1962 Deresky 2006 With its first store in Arkansas Deresky 2006 focusing on the small-town backwaters of America Slater 2003 p5 Wal-Mart has now grown into a billion-dollar international enterprise Slater 2003 However being successful in the Mexican Canadian Argentinean and Brazilian markets Deresky 2006 did not help Wal-Marts venture into the German market Since their initial entry in 1997 through the acquisition of two other German hypermarkets Wal-Mart has been making losses annually Deresky 2006 They now hope to penetrate the East European retail market and have selected Hungary as the initial country of entry The purpose of this report is thus to analyse Wal-Marts sub-optimal operating performance in Germany then making use of the experience gained there recommend a best way and strategy of making a successful impact in Hungary and subsequently other parts of the East European market With this objective in mind Wal-Marts analysis of their misadventure in Germany will have to focus on the cultural differences both market-wise and people-wise The same kind of research also needs to be done on the Hungary retail market to find out the preferences and likes or dislikes of Hungarian consumers as well as the operating styles and procedures of all parties involved in the retail industry 20 Culture Issues One of the most significant factors that resulted in Wal-Marts sub-optimal performance in Germany was a lack of understanding for Germanys retailing culture Deresky 2006 which involves a complex set of interrelating beliefs and ways of living Bennett 1996 p27 Germanys retail industry has different characteristics styles and preferences from those of the United States US due to the differences in the two countrys culture Deresky 2006 Because of this some of the things that contributed to the success of Wal-Mart in other countries could not be implemented in Germany Deresky 2006
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