BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Wal-Mart Stores plans to cut between 700 and 800 jobs at its headquarters here over the next few weeks, primarily in the areas of real estate, apparel merchandising and health, according to media reports.
The cuts were outlined in a memo written by Mike Duke, the company's newly installed chief executive officer, who was quoted as saying the job cuts will not impact operations at Wal-Mart stores or Sam's Clubs.
David Tovar, a corporate spokesman, told media outlets the cutbacks in real estate are a result of the slowdown in the company's rate of expansion. In the last two years Wal-Mart has outlined growth plans calling for reductions in new-store openings in the U.S. This year, the company plans only 125 to 140 supercenters and 17 Neighborhood Markets, vs. 166 supercenters and 23 Neighborhood Markets last year.
Tovar also said some positions in the company's apparel-buying operation will not be eliminated but will relocate to New York.
Wal-Mart plans to consolidate pharmacy, optical and in-store health clinics into a single business unit, resulting in additional cuts, Tovar was quoted as saying.
The company could not be reached for further comment.