Friday, January 15, 2016

Wal-Mart to close 7 stores in Puerto Rico

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon
Walmart announced Friday the closing of seven stores in Puerto Rico as part of the shuttering of 154 locations in the U.S. In addition, the company is closing 102 Walmart Express stores -which had been in pilot since 2011-, 23 Neighborhood Markets, 12 Supercenters, six discount centers, and four Sam’s Clubs. Walmart instead will focus on strengthening its Supercenters, optimizing Neighborhood Markets, growing the e-commerce business and expanding Pickup services for customers.
The Puerto Rico stores, slated to close to the public on Jan. 28, are located in the municipalities of Villalba, Utuado, Coamo, Salinas, Rio Grande and Toa Alta. Of the affected stores, three operate under the "Super Ahorros" banner and the rest under the "Amigo" brand.
“Actively managing our portfolio of assets is essential to maintaining a healthy business,” said Doug McMillon, president and CEO, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. “Closing stores is never an easy decision, but it is necessary to keep the company strong and positioned for the future. It’s important to remember that we’ll open well more than 300 stores around the world next year. So we are committed to growing, but we are being disciplined about it.
The announced closings come after a review of Walmart’s nearly 11,600 worldwide stores that took into account a number of factors, including financial performance as well as strategic alignment with long-term plans. In total, the impacted stores represent less than 1 percent of both global square footage and revenue.
Despite the closings, Walmart plans to open stores worldwide in the coming fiscal year. In the U.S., 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.
In total, approximately 10,000 employees in the U.S. will be affected by the closings.
“The decision to close stores is difficult and we care about the associates who will be impacted,” McMillon said. “We invested considerable time assessing our stores and clubs and don’t take this lightly. We are supporting those impacted with extra pay and support, and we will take all appropriate steps to ensure they are treated well.” 


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