Report: Wal-Mart Eyes $10 Billion in Sales for Marketside

New York City Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said its new small-format Marketside grocery-store concept could expand to a chain of more than 1,000 stores with more than $10 billion in annual sales, the Financial Times reported on its Web site.

The retailer plans to open 10 stores initially, with four slated to open in the Phoenix area this fall.

The Financial Times report was based on a job posting for the retailer, which the newspaper said was subsequently removed. The posting was on Marketside’s Web site.

A Wal-Mart spokesman said that Marketside is a very small-scale pilot project, and that the chain has no definite plans for it beyond that, according to Reuters.

In previous statements, Wal-Mart had said it was developing Marketside to attract shoppers looking for a quick option to purchase fresh groceries.

The new concept comes after British supermarket rival Tesco entered the U.S. marketplace last year with its small-format Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets.