Wal-Mart will open its first four Marketside stores a week tomorrow, four days after Tesco reveals much-anticipated figures for its fledgling Fresh & Easy business.

Wal-Mart will open the small shops in Phoenix, Arizona, where Fresh & Easy is already trading.

The launch comes less than a year after Tesco entered the US, where it has since bumped up its store count to 78 in the states of Arizona, California and Nevada.

Tesco reveals its interim results – including the first figures for Fresh & Easy – on Tuesday. Broker Citi expects a loss of about£100 million for Fresh & Easy for the year. Analyst James Anstead said: “It will be difficult to draw too many conclusions from the significant loss that the company has already guided towards.” However, he added: “The absolute sales figures will give some indication of the level of sales densities that the business is achieving.”

Fresh & Easy has been the subject of much speculation since its debut. Wal-Mart chief executive Lee Scott said earlier this month that Tesco is a very good retailer and that he had “a lot of faith that they will find their direction” with Fresh & Easy.