Leaked Wal-Mart Emails Cause PR Headache After Exec Describes Sales As ‘Disaster’

Some leaked Wal-Mart emails may have compounded an already rough sales situation for the mega-retailer after internal panic and negative sentiment about this quarter’s numbers were revealed in the exact not very flattering terms used by worried execs.

The leaked Wal-Mart emails began to circulate last week, and the internal communications immediately caused some havoc for the retailer. In the emails dated February 12, Jerry Murray, Wal- Mart’s vice president of finance and logistics, did not mince words when describing current morale on the sales front within Wal-Mart’s highest echelons.

In the leaked Wal-Mart emails, Murray writes:

“In case you haven’t seen a sales report these days, February MTD [month-to-date] sales are a total disaster. The worst start to a month I have seen in my [roughly] seven years with the company.”

But the leaked Wal-Mart emails didn’t stop there — going further back, a February 1 email obtained by Bloomberg indicated others at Wal-Mart feeling apprehensive about sales numbers. Cameron Geiger, senior vice president of Wal-Mart U.S. Replenishment, wrote in that transmission:

“Have you ever had one of those weeks where your best- prepared plans weren’t good enough to accomplish everything you set out to do? Well, we just had one of those weeks here at Walmart U.S. Where are all the customers? And where’s their money?”

The leaked Wal-Mart emails seemed to cause havoc in the stock market for the mega-retailer, and shares of Wal-Mart closed down 2.2 percent at the bell Friday. In response to the controversy and lack of confidence sparked, a spokesman was forced to address the leaked Wal-Mart emails in a statement:

“As with any organization, we often see internal communications that are not entirely accurate, that lack the proper context and represent individual opinions.”

A fourth-quarter earnings report from a period before the leaked Wal-Mart emails will be released on February 21.

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