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Walmart’s plan to open 150 across the nation in the next five years

Walmart, a big name in American retail, is looking to grow even more. They’re planning on adding or changing over 150 big stores in the next five years, announced on Wednesday. They’ll be turning some smaller shops into Supercenters, offering a wide variety of food and products, but most of these will be brand new locations, according to Josh Havens, a spokesperson for Walmart.

The company hasn’t shared the details on the cost of these new stores or their locations. Currently, Walmart runs over 4,600 stores throughout the U.S. and nearly 600 Sam’s Club locations. Sam’s Club is also looking to expand, with over 30 new stores expected to open in the U.S.

As the biggest private employer in the U.S., Walmart employs around 1.6 million people. Almost 90% of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store. This expansion shows Walmart believes its physical stores are still important, even as it faces tough competition from online retailers like Amazon and Shein, and is also focusing on increasing its online sales and third-party marketplace.

Walmart stands out from other retailers, especially in how it has dealt with customers spending less on non-essential items. Being the top grocery seller in the country and known for its low prices, Walmart has managed well through inflation and has even drawn in shoppers from higher income brackets.

The company’s stock reached a record high last year, and just this Tuesday, Walmart announced a 3-for-1 stock split.

In a post on the company’s website Wednesday, Walmart U.S. CEO John Furner said the retailer plans to start 12 new store projects this year and will convert one of its smaller locations into a Walmart Supercenter. The move to open or expand locations is in addition to the company’s plans to renovate other stores, he added.

Furner said the new stores will reflect Walmart’s more modern look, which it is rolling out more broadly. The “store of the future” design has a sleeker layout that emphasizes the retailer’s fashion-forward apparel brands, adds technology like scannable QR codes and features sharper signage.

New stores will also have more sustainability features, such as energy-efficient lighting, he said.

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