Nearly 600 workers to be laid off
The Walmart logo is displayed on a store in Springfield, Ill., May 16, 2011. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman, File)
Walmart is closing ten of its stores across the country this month. It is official the last two stores operating within the Portland city limits will be included. The locations, at 1123 North Hayden Meadows Drive and at 4200 Southeast 82nd Avenue at the Eastport Plaza, will both close on March 24. Walmart did announce they will help the affected employees transfer to other locations in the area.
Walmart said they are closing the stores because they were not meeting financial expectations. They also acknowledged that a "consider many factors, including current and projected financial performance, location, population, customer needs, and the proximity of other nearby stores when making these difficult decisions."
From January 2022- January 2023 Portland Police showed over 27,100 reports of theft in the city. That averages over 2,000 incidences a month. "Theft is an issue. It’s higher than what it has historically been," Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said in December on CNBC. He added that "prices will be higher and/or stores will close" if authorities don’t crack down on prosecuting shoplifting crimes.
Portland police have been cracking down on retail shoplifters in recent months, with one sting in December seeing 64 arrests, another in February leading to 40 arrests. “For a long time we kind of let everybody get away with it, we just didn’t have the resources to actually touch on it,” Jordan Zaitz, a member of Portland Police’s Neighborhood Response Team, told KPTV.
“Now it’s good to actually be able to arrest people and hold them accountable and hopefully get them the help they need.”
In one of Walmart's recent earnings call, Walmart CFO, John David Rainey, said the company lowered its outlook for the year ahead due to consumers having fewer funds on hand and interest rate raises from the Federal Reserve.
Walmart still operates several stores outside the city itself, in what is considered the metro area that includes the suburbs.