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Published reports say that Wal-Mart’s Sam’s Club division will look to differentiate itself this holiday season by selling the kinds of items and “dream packages” that ordinarily might be found in the annual Neiman Marcus catalog, such as a six-seat Cessna Citation Mustang jet for $2.7 million, a trip for four to the Super Bowl in Miami for $71,000, and a trip for four to a Tony Bennett concert in London for $44,000.

It isn’t a new approach for Sam’s. Last year, it offered and sold an 82-carat diamond necklace for $263,574 and a $30,000 trip to a Jimmy Buffett concert.

The goal is to both differentiate the company’s club stores from the competition – Costco and BJ’s – but to take advantage of what Wal-Mart sees as an increased income level among its club members. And Sam’s will further differentiate itself by advertising in Oprah Winfrey’s monthly magazine, something that clubs don’t generally do.
KC's View:
Is there something in the water down in Bentonville? Last week, we reported that Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott was going to NY to get an award for environmental activism from a bunch of Hollywood producers who we’re guessing are mostly liberals. In recent days, Wal-Mart has joined the Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, said will sell the Plan B “morning after” pill without restrictions, and has embraced Al Gore and his hit documentary about global warming, “An Inconvenient Truth.”

And now, it looks like it wants to out-chic Nieman Marcus.

(By the way, the $200-per-ticket we paid to see Jimmy Buffett at Madison Square Garden suddenly looks like a pretty good deal…though Mrs. Content Guy almost shot us when she saw the bill.)

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