Walmart, the American retail corporate giant, is set to close down several stores this year, stating that some of their locations are underperforming financially. The decision was unfortunately made when certain stores failed to meet their financial expectations, following the morbid trend of Walmart continuously closing down a handful of locations each year.
Walmart had already announced ten stores will close this year in Washington DC, Illinois, New Mexico, Florida, Oregon, and Wisconsin, including two “Pickup” locations in Illinois and Arkansas, an experimental project Walmart has undertaken where they have pick-up only stores in select states.
Now Walmart this week has quietly announced even more closures including in South Bend, Brooklyn, Oahu, Everett, Minnesota, and more.
Thankfully, employees at these closing stores will have the opportunity to transfer to other locations, with nearly 600 workers affected by these closures. CEO Doug McMillon stated that theft is forcing this top retailer to close stores if the problem persists. “We’ve got safety measures, security measures that we’ve put in place by store location.” The CEO said in December. “If that’s not corrected over time, prices will be higher, and/or stores will close.”
Local shoppers are feeling the effects of the serial store closures. The closing of their local Walmart’s is a major blow to their own pockets, as the superstores are known for their conveniently low prices and massive array of products. Among the stores that include pharmacies, consumers will now have to transfer their prescriptions to other locations, an inconvenience for those that relied on Walmart for their health needs.
Retail theft has reportedly become nearly a $100 billion problem for retailers across the country as of a 2022 report from the Marshall Project, though this may not be a sign of an actively worsening problem. Shoplifting plays a part in this huge estimate, with consumer and employee theft making up a huge percentage of this overall issue. Other issues, such as process failures and unknown sources are also to blame.
With these recent closures, it could be a sign that Walmart is struggling to compete in this current retail climate, online retailers being the biggest culprits. Amazon and other large virtual companies are dominating the industry due to their convenience and affordability, and it seems that Walmart is struggling to maintain their track record. Walmart, the face of American retail shopping, needs to adapt to these changing conditions or risk closing even more locations.