- Of the world’s top 250 retailers, 104 have no international operations at all, according to Deloitte, a consultancy.
- According to The Economist, when Wal-Mart went into Germany in 1997, it assumed that Germans would like to be treated with the same courtesy as Americans but Wal-Mart discovered that many Germans regard shop-assistants who try to help them with suspicion and flee the premises to avoid buying anything from them. To be fair, they got off to a bad start in Germany by appointing a country manager who did not speak German.
- In Brazil they failed to notice that people like to shop as a family group: the aisles of its shops were too narrow to accommodate the standard family party.
- B&Q, a British do-it-yourself retailer, discovered that Chinese people look down their noses at doing things themselves. It became a buy-it-yourself, and get somebody else to do it for you, retailer.