No One Seems to Know Why Sam's Club Is Closing US Stores, Laying Off Thousands of Workers


In the same week Walmart announced more than a million of its associates would receive bonuses or wage increases, employees of its corporate sister, Sam’s Club, learned of company-wide layoffs and store closings.

As Business Insider reported, Sam’s Club confirmed the news Thursday in a tweet.

“After a thorough review of our existing portfolio, we’ve decided to close a series of clubs and better align our locations with our strategy,” a post on the company’s verified Twitter account stated.

The comment came in direct response to a user who accused Sam’s Club of giving its staff no notice of the layoffs.

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“Closing clubs is never easy and we’re committed to working with impacted members and associates through this transition,” the statement concluded.

A number of the stores were closed as of Thursday while an unspecified number of other locations are reportedly on the chopping block.

As of the latest reports available, store closures had been confirmed in Alaska, Arizona, Indiana, New Jersey, New York and Texas.

According to an audit team lead at a Sam’s Club in Alaska, the company has plans to close all of its locations in the state.

“From what I heard, there’s over 260 stores that have been closed down,” Jessica Buckner told KTVA.

In many reports, customers and employees alike were met with locked doors or security personnel turning them away upon arriving at a now-closed store.

Business Insider compiled a list of more than two dozen stores already closed, as reported by local media and other reports.

The news of widespread Sam’s Club closings comes on the heels of several other major chains announcing their intentions to close additional brick-and-mortar retail locations.

Sears Holdings Corporation revealed its latest round of closures, which will include more than 100 Kmart and Sears locations across the country.

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“Sears Holdings continues its strategic assessment of the productivity of our Kmart and Sears store base and will continue to right size our store footprint in number and size,” a corporate statement read.

Macy’s similarly announced its intentions to close 11 stores in 2018 after dozens of locations met the same fate last year.

“While closing a store is always a difficult decision because of the impact on our customers, our associates and the community, Macy’s is delighted to have served these communities over the years,” a company spokesperson said.

News of the Sam’s Club closings has been met with added criticism over allegations that the company did not provide adequate notice.

Many on social media also pointed out that the statement came shortly after a much cheerier announcement about employees on the Walmart side of the corporation.

Employees at a Houston location told KHOU that their first notice of the store’s closure came when they arrived and found the doors locked and a note on the door.

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Chris Agee is an American journalist with more than 15 years of experience in a wide range of newsrooms.
Chris Agee is an American journalist with more than 15 years of experience in a variety of newsroom settings. After covering crime and other beats for newspapers and radio stations across the U.S., he served as managing editor at Western Journalism until 2017. He has also been a regular guest and guest host on several syndicated radio programs. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with his wife and son.
Texas Press Association, Best News Writing - 2012
Bachelor of Arts, Journalism - Averett University
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