Bentonville, Ark., Wal-Mart Stores expects to add more than 60 million sq. ft. of gross retail space in fiscal 2006, which begins Feb. 1. The growth represents an 8% increase over the estimated yearend square footage. Taking up that space will be more than 555 new units.
In the United States, the company plans to open 270 to 280 supercenters, 20 to 30 discount stores, 15 to 20 Neighborhood Markets and 30 to 40 Sam’s Clubs. In addition to those 335 to 370 stores, the company plans to open 220 to 230 stores in foreign countries, bringing the global estimate for new store openings to 555 to 600. Expansions or relocations will account for about 215 of the new units.