For the third time in the past five months, Walmart chief merchandising and marketing officer Duncan Mac Naughton is representing Walmart at a major investor conference. Smart move considering expectations of further U.S. same-store sales acceleration has served as a catalyst for Walmart shares, which are trading near a 52-week high.
Mac Naughton is scheduled to participate in the Barclays Retail and Restaurants Conference in New York on April 24. His merchandising road show began last year on Dec. 8, when he participated in the Credit Suisse 2nd Annual Consumer Conference and then last month he was on hand in Toronto on March 28 for the CIBC Retail and Consumer Conference.
Historically, Walmart sends C-level executives to speak at investor conferences, so Mac Naughton’s involvement is a bit of a deviation as is the frequency of his participation. Nevertheless, it is understandable as investors want to understand whether the comps recovery in the U.S. business is for real and hear from the executive driving assortment expansion, price leadership and improved in-stock.