Last week, Walmart announced that it would be closing 63 of its underperforming Sam’s Club stores at various locations throughout the country. While most of the news centered around the thousands of employees that would be affected by the decision, there’s also another significant group of people that will also be negatively impacted: hundreds, even thousands of local small businesses.
The retailer has historically prided itself on the services it has provided its small business members which include (for an annual fee) discounts on bulk purchases on office supplies, food, materials and other goods, financing, payment solutions and even healthcare insurance. The chain also has special hours to accommodate its small business customers–many of whom start the day early. So it’s understandable why so many local merchants, restaurants, coffee shops and other small businesses were upset to learn of the sudden closures.
“They’re a significant part of my business,” Joe Gerace, the owner of a Chevron store in Anchorage, Alaska said in a local television report. Gerace buys more than 300 items from Sam’s Club and spends about $50,000 at the store every month. Walmart said it’s closing all of Sam’s Club stores in the state. Continue Reading >>>