Walmart closing 269 stores, 154 in the U.S.

BENTONVILLE, Ark. Wal-Mart Stores today announced plans to close 269 stores in the U.S. and globally.

They posted the following to their website Friday.

“As part of today’s action, the company will close 154 locations in the U.S., including the company’s 102 smallest format stores, Walmart Express, which had been in pilot since 2011. Walmart instead will focus on strengthening Supercenters, optimizing Neighborhood Markets, growing the e-commerce business and expanding Pickup services for customers. Also covered in the closures are 23 Neighborhood Markets, 12 Supercenters, seven stores in Puerto Rico, six discount centers, and four Sam’s Clubs.

Internationally, the company  is following a disciplined strategy of actively managing its portfolio. Consistent with this strategy, the company is closing 115 stores outside the United States. This includes 60 recently-closed, loss-making stores in Brazil, which represents only 5 percent of sales in that market. The company has already been able to relocate many affected associates in Brazil to other stores. The remaining 55 stores are primarily small, loss-making stores in other Latin American markets.  Walmart will disclose more detail about those actions, including the number of stores per market, after completing local associate and community outreach.

Walmart will continue to invest in its future, with plans to open stores worldwide in the coming fiscal year. Domestically, Walmart intends to open 50 to 60 Supercenters and 85 to 95 Neighborhood Markets in Fiscal 2017, which begins Feb. 1. In the same period, Sam’s Club plans to open in seven to 10 new locations. Internationally, Walmart intends to open between 200 and 240 stores during the coming year.”

They also said more than 95 percent of the stores closing in the U.S. are within 10 miles on average of another Walmart, and the hope is that these associates will be placed in nearby locations. All affected Walmart U.S. associates will receive 60 days’ pay and, if eligible, severance. Walmart will also help associates find their next job opportunity, with a goal of placing as many associates as possible who would like to continue with the company at other nearby locations. Our objective is to help all associates find their next job opportunity, whether with Walmart or somewhere else.

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