Walmart marks 20 years in Canada with a summit devoted to frugal living

Walmart opened in Canada for 20 years, and this fall it will host something called 'The Lowering the Cost of Living Summit'. According to Walmart, the summit will "generate new thinking and solutions and bring new attention to improving the financial health of Canadians."

Walmart entered the Canadian marketplace on March 17, 1994 with the purchase of the Woolco Canada chain of retail stores. Starting with a base of 122 Woolco stores and 16,000 employees, Walmart Canada has grown to 389 stores and more than 95,000 associates across Canada.

Walmart will host The Lowering the Cost of Living Summit in Toronto in the fall of 2014. The event will bring together consumers, business leaders, financial specialists, academics, economists, non-governmental organizations and government representatives to examine real solutions to help Canadian families tackle their financial challenges. The full day summit will feature plenary sessions, panels, workshops and networking events designed to stimulate new ideas and the sharing of best practices. Event details will be released over the coming months.

"Our mission is to save Canadians money so that they can live better," said Shelley Broader, president and CEO of Walmart Canada. "As we enter our 20th year in Canada, we want to help find new ways to help lower the cost of living for Canadians." According to a recent nationwide poll conducted by Research Management Group (RMG), 36% of Canadians feel they can only afford to pay for the basic necessities, and 43% feel they tend to live from paycheque-to-paycheque. The RMG survey was conducted for Walmart in late February.

"In addition to this poll, our consumer research shows that 72% of Canadian moms - our core customer - say that Walmart is the top retailer to help them stay on budget," said Ms. Broader. "We want to build on this commitment to find new ways to make life easier for our customers." 

[Walmart Canada website]