Clos­ing West Al­lis Sam’s Club will cost 165 jobs

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel - - Death Notices - Paul Gores Milwaukee Jour­nal Sen­tinel USA TO­DAY NET­WORK - WIS­CON­SIN

The clos­ing of Sam’s Club in West Al­lis will elim­i­nate jobs for 165 em­ploy­ees, the re­tailer has told state of­fi­cials.

In a fil­ing with the Wis­con­sin De­part­ment of Work­force De­vel­op­ment, Sam’s Club stated the store at 1540 S. 108th St. will close per­ma­nently on Jan. 26. How­ever, the ef­fec­tive ter­mi­na­tion date for hourly em­ploy­ees will be March 16, the com­pany said. The ter­mi­na­tion date for man­age­ment em­ploy­ees will be April 13.

Work­ers who lose their jobs will have an op­por­tu­nity to ap­ply for open po­si­tions at other Sam’s Clubs or Wal­mart stores. Sam’s Club is a di­vi­sion Ben­tonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

The West Al­lis Sam’s Club was one of 63 stores closed Thurs­day — the same day em­ploy­ees were no­ti­fied of the clo­sure. The West Al­lis store was set to re­open Fri­day and op­er­ate un­til Jan. 26.

In a state­ment is­sued Thurs­day night, Wal-Mart Stores said the com­pany would con­vert up to 12 of the shut­tered clubs into e-com­merce ful­fill­ment cen­ters, a move it said would speed de­liv­ery of on­line or­ders.

The com­pany will have 597 Sam’s Club stores af­ter the planned clos­ings.

Wal-Mart Stores, which recorded $485.9 bil­lion in rev­enue in fis­cal 2017, said the de­ci­sion to close the Sam’s Clubs came af­ter a per­for­mance re­view.

“Trans­form­ing our busi­ness means man­ag­ing our real es­tate port­fo­lio and Wal­mart needs a strong fleet of Sam’s Clubs that are fit for the fu­ture,” John Furner, pres­i­dent and chief ex­ec­u­tive of Sam’s Club, said in a state­ment. “We know this is dif­fi­cult news for our as­so­ciates and we are work­ing to place as many of them as pos­si­ble at nearby lo­ca­tions.” The first of the con­verted ecom­merce ful­fill­ment cen­ters will be lo­cated in Mem­phis, Tenn., the com­pany said.

Wal­mart said it would pro­vide sup­port and re­sources to em­ploy­ees who are los­ing their jobs, in­clud­ing a bonus an­nounced Thurs­day and 60 days of pay, as well as sev­er­ance to those el­i­gi­ble. The com­pany said the one-time bonuses would cost the com­pany $400 mil­lion and will be based on length of ser­vice.

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