Kansas City, M.O., January 20, 2000 –A unique agreement announced today between the United States Mint and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will allow consumers to obtain the new Golden Dollar coin at more than 2,900 Wal-Mart stores and Sam’s Clubs nationwide beginning January 30.

“This agreement achieves our objective of getting the new Golden Dollar into the hands of as many consumers as possible, as soon as possible,” Diehl said in his remarks to more than 5,000 Wal-Mart store managers gathered at the company’s annual meeting. “Consumers will quickly discover that, not only is the Golden Dollar a beautiful coin, but it also speeds up purchases at cash registers and vending machines.”

Wal-Mart will be offering the coin as change to customers, making their stores the first retail outlet where consumers will be able to obtain the country’s newest currency as change.

“We are excited to work with the U.S. Mint to be the first retailer to offer the new dollar coin to our customers,” said Sam Dunn, vice president of finance for the Wal-Mart Stores Division. “As the nation’s largest retailer, it makes us a natural source for distribution of the coin to consumers nationwide.”

“This agreement with Wal-Mart makes it clear that the new Golden Dollar will enter the mainstream of commerce in a way no previous dollar coin has done,” Diehl said. “We expect other retailers to follow the Wal-Mart example in the months ahead.”

Beginning in March, the Mint will launch a six-month nationwide television, radio, print, transit and Internet advertising campaign to promote public and business-sector awareness and use of the Golden Dollar.

Authorized by the Dollar Coin Act of 1997 and based on lessons learned from the Susan B. Anthony coin, the Mint set out to design a coin that would be widely used throughout the country and easily distinguishable from the quarter. The result is the Golden Dollar. Not only is the coin golden in color, it has a smooth edge, similar to a nickel, and a wide border. The Mint has found in consumer testing that the Golden Dollar is easily distinguishable from other coins by touch alone.

American sculptor Glenna Goodacre designed the obverse (heads) of the Golden Dollar coin, which features the likeness of Sacagawea, the young Shoshone woman who assisted Lewis and Clark on their exploration of the Louisiana Purchase almost 200 years ago. The reverse (tails) of the coin, designed by U.S. Mint Sculptor/Engraver Thomas D. Rogers, Sr., features a soaring Bald Eagle and 17 stars, one for each of the states at the time of the Lewis and Clark Expedition

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT) operates more than 2,485 stores and 460 Sam’s Clubs in the United States. Internationally, the company operates more than 996 units. Wal-Mart employs more than 815,000 associates in the United States and 220,000 internationally. In 1999, the company raised and donated more than $160 million for charitable organizations.

For additional information please visit the Mint’s Golden Dollar website, www.USMINT.gov.

Contact:
Press inquiries: Michael White (202) 354-7222
Customer Service information: (800) USA MINT (872-6468)