Casual commentary about political, cultural and economic issues with a particular interest on the city of Winnipeg by John Dobbin
Thursday, January 11, 2018
Sam's Club Fargo-Moorhead to Close
On the heel's of Walmart announcing they were raising all their employees wages, the company announced that they were closing one of the two warehouse Sam's Club in Fargo/Moorhead, North Dakota/Minnesota putting 168 workers out of a job by January 26. The store closing is along the Interstate heading to Minneapolis close to the Menard's in Moorhead, Minnesota.
Unlike Sam's Club in Grand Forks which was built soon after Walmart, the Sam's Club in Moorhead is distant to the Walmart Supercenter which is deeper into the city. This might have proved too problematic as the two stores feed off each other's customer draw.
Costco entered the Fargo-Moorhead market just a number of years ago but they chose their location in the rapidly expanding south Fargo area down from West Acres Mall. The old gentlemen's agreement to have Costco and Sam's staying out of each other's market appeared to have turned into a war.
Unlike Winnipeg's three Costco's which are always busy, Fargo-Moorhead's warehouse stores often have emptier parking lots. This is true of Sam's and Costco's locations. Truth is the U.S. is more over retailed than Canada is and that's saying a lot. It is also adopting online sales at a greater pace than almost anywhere as well.
Store closures can be seen as an opportunity. While West Acres in Fargo and Columbia Mall in Grand Forks have been greatly bruised with the closures of Sears and J.C. Penny stores, they can re-purpose their malls to smaller and more profitable sized retailers and restaurants. Moreover, stores like Kmart that closed in Moorhead only a short time ago have found new regional players like Runnings move in. The 86,000 square at that location became the 16th in a Minnesota-based Runnings group focused on farm and outdoor sales.
Meanwhile In Winnipeg, the last Target will soon be home to a call centre, Winners/Homesense and Rec Centre. That concludes the leasing of all the former Zellers/Target locations in Winnipeg.
The 63 Sam''s locations closures are sad and in some cases shocking to those that worked or shopped there. Sam's in Moorhead was only built in 2014 and occupied 186,000 square feet by a highway. Alas, it was not enough and for Winnipggers who have Sam's memberships (and there are a few), they will still have Grand Fork and West Fargo's Same to shop at.