Jun 5, 2023 - Business

Legendary Walmart celebration packed with celebs and stars

A photo of a crowd watching screens in an arena where John Legend is performing on stage.

John Legend was among surprise guests at Friday's Walmart Shareholders' meeting. Photo: Worth Sparkman/Axios

Walmart threw a party that attracted 10,000 people from 19 countries.

  • Snoop Dogg, John Legend, Pitbull, Shania Twain, Rachel Platten and a talented group of Walmart associates took turns performing on stage. Comedian Kevin Hart emceed.
  • Movie stars Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans made cameos to plug their branded products — the Centr workout brand and the Jinx line of dog food, respectively.

Why it matters: The annual event is the single largest gathering of Walmart employees where executives boost morale and share their vision with frontline workers.

  • It's also an opportunity for the company to show Wall Street analysts and media what to expect from Walmart in the coming months.

Details: A few key takeaways from the week's meetings:

1. Automation — The company is streamlining how products are delivered over the last mile from stores to consumers' doors, making jobs easier for workers and purchases more seamless for customers.

2. Technology — Hand in glove with automation, Walmart showed how frontline workers are using a single app to navigate their daily activities, making their jobs easier and simplifying how they keep an eye on store inventory.

3. Store experience — Consumers in about 700 locations can expect to see remodels by the end of Walmart's fiscal year in January. Better signage, product advertising on Walmart Radio and in various locations throughout stores will drive promotions and — hopefully — sales.

Worth's thought bubble: It's been awhile since I've attended a Walmart shareholders' event, but even seasoned Wall Street analysts said the production value was next level.

  • It was a spectacle. While it may have been expensive, it seems a no-brainer that any employee in attendance would leave Bud Walton Arena energized and ready to take the party back to their own store.
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