Building on his early successes, Sam Walton opened the first Walmart Discount City in Rogers, AR. on July 2nd,1962.
After graduating from University of Missouri, Walton became a management trainee for JC Penney in Des Moines, IA. were he honed his retail acumen. After only 18 months, he left his position to join the military during WWII.
With $5000 in savings from his military service and an extra $20,000 from his father-in-law, Sam bought a Ben Franklin store in Newport AR and he began to develop his retail empire. His business continued to grow and evolve with a number of five and dime stores and by 1962 he and his brother Bud owned 16 stores.
Meijer, another discount store chain in the area, caught the attention of Walton who admired the one stop shop concept. So on July 2nd 1962, he opened the Walton Discount City. Two of his focuses were to locate stores in small towns and to sell American-made product when possible.
He was immediately successful. By 1967, Walmart had grown to 24 stores. By 1990, Walmart surpassed Sears and Kmart to become the largest US retailer on its way to becoming the largest retailer in the world.