Wal-Mart to shutter 269 stores; Canadian stores unaffected

NEW YORK -- Wal-Mart is closing 269 stores, more than half of them in the U.S. and another big chunk in its challenging Brazilian market.

See Full Article

The stores being shuttered account for a fraction of the company's 11,000 stores worldwide and less than 1 per cent of its global revenue.

More than 95 per cent of the stores set to be closed in the U.S. are within 10 miles of another Wal-Mart. The Bentonville, Arkansas, company said it is working to ensure that workers are placed in nearby locations.

The store closures will start at the end of the month.

The announcement comes three months after Wal-Mart Stores Inc. CEO Doug McMillon told investors that the world's largest retailer would review its fleet of stores with the goal of becoming more nimble in the face of increased competition from all fronts, including from online rival Amazon.com.

"Actively managing our portfolio of assets is essential to maintaining a healthy business," McMillon said in a statement. "Closing stores is never an easy decision. But it is necessary to keep the company strong and positioned for the future."

Wal-Mart operates 4,500 in the U.S. Its global workforce is 2.2 million, 1.4 million in the U.S. alone.

Wal-Mart has warned that its earnings for the fiscal year starting next month will be down as much as 12 per cent as it invests further in online operations and pours money into improving customers' experience.

Of the closures announced Friday, 154 locations will be in the U.S., including the company's 102 smallest-format stores called Wal-Mart Express, which were opened as a test in 2011.

Wal-Mart Express marked the retailer's first entry into the convenience store arena. The stores are about 12,000 square feet and sell essentials like toothpaste. But the concept never caught on as the stores served the same purpose as Wal-Mart's larger Neighborhood Markets: fill-in trips and prescription pickups.

Also covered in the closures are 23 Neighborhood Markets, 12 supercenters, seven stores in Puerto Rico, six discount stores and four Sam's Clubs.

Wal-Mart will now focus in the U.S. on supercenters, Neighborhood Markets, the e-commerce business and pickup services for shoppers.

The retailer is closing 60 loss-making locations in Brazil, which account for 5 per cent of sales in that market. Wal-Mart, which operated 558 stores in Brazil before the closures, has struggled as the economy there has soured. Its Every Day Low price strategy has also not been able to break against heavy promotions from key rivals.

The remaining 55 stores are spread elsewhere in Latin America.

Wal-Mart said that it's still sticking to its plan announced last year to open 50 to 60 supercenters, 85 to 95 Neighborhood Markets and 7 to 10 Sam's Clubs in the U.S. during the fiscal year that begins Feb. 1. Outside the U.S., Wal-Mart plans to open 200 to 240 stores.

The financial impact of the closures is expected to be 20 cents to 22 cents per diluted earnings per share from continuing operations with about 19 cents to 20 cents expected to affect the current fourth quarter. The company is expected to release fourth quarter and full year results on Feb. 18.

Shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. fell $1.12, or 1.7 per cent, to 61.94 in morning trading.



Advertisements

Latest Economic News

  • Volkswagen ordered to pay $2.1B in class-action suit over emissions scandal

    Economic CBC News
    Members of a Canadian class-action lawsuit against Volkswagen can submit claims for reimbursement starting on Friday after an Ontario court approved a $2.1-billion settlement plan. The 105,000 people who purchased or leased certain Volkswagen or Audi vehicles with two-litre diesel engines that were caught up in an emissions cheating scandal will each receive a payment between $5,100 and $8,000, wrote Superior Court Justice Edward Belobaba in his judgment Wednesday. Source
  • Bombardier rejects Boeing claim CSeries was dumped into the U.S. at below cost

    Economic CTV News
    MONTREAL -- Bombardier and the federal government have rejected Boeing's claim in a complaint filed with the U.S. government that its Canadian rival has dumped its new CSeries commercial jet into the United States at below cost. Source
  • Boeing seeks U.S. anti-dumping probe against Bombardier CSeries jet

    Economic CBC News
    Boeing Co. said on Thursday it had asked the U.S. Commerce Department for an investigation into alleged subsidies and unfair pricing for Canadian planemaker Bombardier's CSeries airplane. The request for anti-dumping measures was also addressed to the U.S. Source
  • Shaw Communications reports outage of internet, TV and phone services

    Economic CBC News
    Shaw Communications Inc. says customers were hit by an outage to its internet, television and home phone services on Thursday. Company support services said in a 1:20 p.m. PT posting on a website that technicians were working on the problem. Source
  • Shaw internet, TV and phone service outage fixed

    Economic CBC News
    Shaw Communications Inc. says customers were hit by an outage to its internet, television and home phone services on Thursday. Company support services said in a 1:20 p.m. PT posting on a website that technicians were working on the problem. Source
  • Canam stock nearly doubles on going-private offer for Quebec-based company

    Economic CTV News
    MONTREAL -- Canam Group is preparing to end its 33-year run as a public company after partnering with a U.S. company and Quebec investors to take the structural steel specialist private. After a few years of reflection, the leadership of the company founded in 1960 concluded that the constraints of being public not longer fit with its vision. Source
  • United Airlines reaches undisclosed settlement with passenger dragged from plane

    Economic CBC News
    A Kentucky doctor who was dragged off a United Airlines flight after he refused to give up his seat to crew members has reached a settlement with the airline for an undisclosed amount. David Dao's legal team announced the settlement Thursday in a brief statement. Source
  • Employers can pay women less based on past salaries, U.S. court rules

    Economic CTV News
    SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court says employers can legally pay women less than men for the same work based on differences in the employees' previous salaries. The decision by the 9th U.S. Source
  • BlackBerry smartphone with physical keyboard will be sold in Canada next month

    Economic CTV News
    TORONTO - Canadians will be able to buy a new BlackBerry-branded smartphone with a physical keyboard starting next month. The KEYone, a phone made in partnership between TCL Communication Technology Holdings Ltd. (TCT) and BlackBerry (TSX:BB), will be available for pre-order at some partners as of May 18. Source
  • Southwest Airlines to end practice of overbooking flights

    Economic CBC News
    Southwest Airlines says it plans to stop overbooking flights — an industry practice implicated in an ugly incident on a United Airlines flight that has damaged United's reputation with the flying public. Last year Southwest bumped 15,000 passengers off flights, more than any other U.S. Source