Top Walmart Shareholders

Walmart Inc. (WMT), founded nearly six decades ago by Sam Walton in Arkansas, is one of the largest discount and superstore retailers in the world. The company offers a wide variety of merchandise through its traditional brick-and-mortar retail outlets as well as its growing e-commerce business. Walmart sells a dizzying breadth of items, including apparel, house wares, small appliances, electronics, musical instruments, books, home improvement, shoes, jewelry, pharmaceutical products, automotive tools, groceries, and more. Walmart operates approximately 11,500 stores in 27 different countries.

The top shareholders of Walmart are S. Robson Walton, Marc E. Lore, C. Douglas McMillon, Walton Enterprises LLC, Walton Family Holdings Trust, and Vanguard Group Inc.

Walmart's 12-month trailing net income and revenue are $15.0 billion and $534.7 billion, respectively. The company's market cap is about $375 billion. These financial data are as of July 13, 2020.

"Insider" refers to people in senior management positions and members of the board of directors, as well as people or entities that own more than 10% of the company's stock. In this context, it has nothing to do with insider trading.

We look in more detail below at the 6 largest shareholders of Walmart.

Top 3 Individual Insider Shareholders

S. Robson Walton

S. Robson 'Rob' Walton owns a total of 2,615,810 Walmart shares, representing 0.09% of the company's total shares outstanding. Rob Walton is the son of Walmart founder Sam Walton and first joined the company in 1969, seven years after it was founded. He was chair of Walmart's board of directors for 23 years from 1992 to 2015, a period during which Walmart grew from a small chain into one of the world's biggest retailers. Before taking the chair's role, Walton served in various roles, including senior vice president, corporate secretary, general counsel, and vice chair. A trained lawyer, he was a partner at Conner & Winters in Tulsa, Oklahoma, before joining Walmart. He retired from the board in 2015. His net worth is $56.4 billion, according to Forbes.

Marc E. Lore

Marc Lore owns a total of 1,952,743 Walmart shares, representing 0.07% of the company's total shares outstanding. Since 2016, Lore has led the company's U.S. e-commerce growth and expansion as president and chief executive of Walmart U.S. eCommerce. Thus, Lore is the leader of Walmart's effort to build an e-commerce business that can compete with Inc. (AMZN). Walmart paid $3 billion in 2016 to buy, which Lore co-founded. Prior to co-founding Jet, Mr. Lore was the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Quidsi, a parent company of several e-commerce sites, which was sold to Amazon in 2011 for $550 million.

C. Douglas McMillon

Douglas McMillon owns a total of 1,274,758 Walmart shares, representing 0.05% of the company's total shares outstanding. Mr. McMillon worked his way up Walmart's ranks for nearly 30 years, starting by unloading company trucks as a teenager before eventually becoming president and CEO in 2014. Before that, he led two key units of Walmart: as president and CEO of Walmart International from 2009 to 2014, and as president and CEO of Walmart's Sam's Club franchise from 2005 to 2009.

Top 3 Institutional Shareholders

Institutional investors hold about 30% of Walmart's total shares outstanding, which is a relatively small share compared to institutional holdings of other large cap stocks.  This relatively small share, however, can be explained by the fact that the Walton family, in some way or another, holds the majority of the company's total shares outstanding, at about 50.1%.

Walton Enterprises LLC

Walton Enterprises owns 1.0 billion shares of Walmart, representing approximately 35% of total shares outstanding, according to the company's SEC Form 4 filed on March 5, 2020.  Located in Bentonville, Arkansas, Walton Enterprises is the private holding company through which the Walton family manages their ownership interests in Walmart. In March, Walton Enterprises transferred more than 400 million shares of Walmart to Walton Family Holdings Trust (see below). This transfer did not affect the total number of Walmart shares owned by the Walton family.

Walton Family Holdings Trust

Walton Family Holdings Trust owns approximately 400 million shares of Walmart, representing approximately 15% of total shares outstanding, according to a SEC Form 4 filed on March 5, 2020.  The Trust's current holdings of Walmart shares were mostly transferred to it from Walton Enterprises LLC in early March of this year. The Trust was first set up in 2015 and received an initial distribution of 194 million shares, 98% of which have been sold. Over the years, Walmart management has initiated company stock buybacks that otherwise would have sharply boosted the family's ownership of the company. The Walton family responded by setting up the Trust to facilitate sales of Walmart shares to maintain a balance between family and non-family ownership. The original statement announcing the foundation of the Trust indicated that sales proceeds would be used to help fund charitable contributions.

Vanguard Group Inc.

Vanguard Group owns 137.6 million shares of Walmart, representing 4.9% of total shares outstanding, according to the company's 13F filing for the period ending March 31, 2020. The company is primarily a mutual fund and ETF management company with about $6.2 trillion in global assets under management (AUM). The Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO) is one of the company's largest exchange-traded funds (ETFs) with about $151 billion in AUM. Walmart comprises 0.69% of VOO's holdings.

Diversity & Inclusiveness of Walmart

As part of our effort to improve the awareness of the importance of diversity in companies, we offer investors a glimpse into the transparency of more than just who are the shareholders at Walmart. We highlight the company's commitment to diversity, inclusiveness, and social responsibility as a whole. Find out how Walmart reports the diversity of its management and workforce. The ✔ shows if Walmart discloses its data about the diversity of its board of directors, C-Suite, general management, and employees overall across a variety of markets.

Walmart Diversity & Inclusiveness Reporting
  Race Gender Ability Veteran Status Sexual Orientation
Board of Directors          
General Management ✔ (U.S. Only) ✔ (U.S. Only)      
Employees ✔ (U.S. Only) ✔ (U.S. Only)      
Article Sources
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  15. Walmart Inc. "Walton Enterprises, LLC Statement (April 10, 2015)."

  16. Vanguard Group Inc. "Fast facts about Vanguard."

  17. "VOO Vanguard S&P 500 ETF."

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