Walmart, the multinational retail corporation, has recently shuttered “Store No.8”, its non-physical unit engaged in technological and business innovation. This move indicates a strategic shift in Walmart's approach to innovation.
Store No. 8 was not a brick-and-mortar establishment, but rather, a hub for creating and implementing business changes that directly influenced the customers' shopping experience. It spearheaded innovative concepts such as In-Home delivery service, and text and voice shopping.
Why did Walmart close Store No. 8?
John David Rainey, Walmart's chief financial officer, clarified that the close down of Store No. 8 doesn't mean a stop to innovation. Instead, the responsibility for staying competitive in the market now rests on all teams within the company.
Walmart is also closing physical stores
Notably, Walmart is also shuttering physical outlets, including the one in El Cajon. The reasons behind these closures are underperformance and inability to renew leases. However, local residents also pointed out that high crime rates and shoplifting might have played a role in the decision making.
CEO’s stand on store closures
Walmart CEO, Doug McMillon, has been clear about the company's stance on crime. He has previously stated that stores would be closed if criminal activities continue to be a pressing issue.
Amazon’s withdrawal from grocery pick-up sector
In related news, Amazon, a major competitor of Walmart, has decided to pull out from the grocery pick-up sector. This move could potentially reshape the competitive landscape in the sector.