Wal-Mart: ¡No Mas! - The Packer

Wal-Mart: ¡No Mas!

01/29/2014 01:06:00 PM
Vicky Boyd

Mas Club logoBentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc. plans to pull the plug on its lone Más Club pilot store.

The 87,000-square-foot warehouse store — a test format opened in 2009 in Houston — was similar to a Sam’s Club store but carried more Hispanic-focused products, according to a Jan. 27 Houston Chronicle article. The store is scheduled to close Feb. 7.

Earlier in 2009, Wal-Mart opened another concept in Houston and Phoenix — Supermercado de Walmart — in an effort to reach more Hispanic customers. These were loosely patterned after its Neighborhood Market stores that have more of a grocery focus and a smaller footprint than traditional Wal-Mart discount stores.

With the Más Club experiment, Wal-Mart came to learn that it made more sense to incorporate more Hispanic products into traditional Sam’s Clubs than to have separate stores, according to the Chronicle article.

The closure coincides with parent company Wal-Mart’s plans to lay off about 2,300 Sam’s Club employees nationwide as competition from online retailers and Costco heats up.

Houston is home to Fiesta Mart Supermarkets, a retailer in Texas and Louisiana that focuses on Hispanic shoppers. In Houston, it has about a dozen supermarkets.

In addition, San Antonio-based H-E-B has three Hispanic-focused Mi Tienda grocery stores in the Houston area. The first one opened in 2006.

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produce guy    
Texas  |  January, 31, 2014 at 08:11 AM

Walmart had the right idea with the store, but their execution was horrible. It was not the competition that did them in, but their own mistakes trying to fit this format into the same cookie cutter system(s) and methodology. I hope that they learn from their experience and realize that all formats (and all departments for that matter) are not the same. I think higher wages along with specifically trained people (in their own departments) would be a step in the right direction.

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