A Lesson on Elementary, Worldly Wisdom As It Relates To Investment Management & Business Charles Munger, USC Business School, 1994
He played the chain store game harder and better than anyone else. Walton invented practically nothing. But he copied everything anybody else ever did that was smart—and he did it with more fanaticism and better employee manipulation. So he just blew right by them all.
There's practically no city left in the U.S., aside from a few very big ones, where there's more than one daily newspaper. And again, that's a scale thing. Once I get most of the circulation, I get most of the advertising. And once I get most of the advertising and circulation, why would anyone want the thinner paper with less information in it? So it tends to cascade to a winner-take-allsituation.
Walton, being as shrewd as he was, basically broke other small town merchants in the early days. With his more efficient system, he might not have been able to tackle some titan headon at the time. But with his better system, he could destroy those small town merchants. And he went around doing it time after time after time. Then, as he got bigger, he started destroying the big boys.