Sam’s Club this week announced plans to open a multi-purpose distribution center in Oklahoma City early next year, part of the Walmart-owned membership club retailer’s broader U.S. growth strategy.
The 300,000-square-foot facility will cost about $40 million to open, the retail giant said.
“We’re excited to enhance our supply chain capabilities in the state of Oklahoma,” Sam’s Club’s Chief Supply Chain Officer Joseph Godsey said in a statement. “We are on a journey to transform the entire Sam’s Club supply chain through strategic expansion and cutting-edge automation. This investment will help us provide a better experience for our members in the speed and availability of our products.”
Sam’s Club made its nationwide debut in 1983 in Midwest City, Oklahoma, and Walmart is the state’s largest employer.
Early this year, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer announced its intent to open more than 30 new warehouses around the country over the next several years—a significant move since it hadn’t opened a new store since 2017 and it shuttered more than 60 clubs in 2018. The new crop of stores will be about 160,000 square feet, about 20,000-square-feet larger than most current clubs.
Soaring inflation has brought shoppers to Sam’s Club’s doors in recent quarters, driving record same-store sales growth and membership numbers that are fueling this latest expansion.
In announcing the new store plans, Sam’s Club said it would “invest in and modernize its supply chain” through the addition of high-tech distribution and fulfillment centers around the country. The retailer said it plans to open five new distribution centers in 2023, with the first slated for Georgia during the third quarter.
Sam’s Club said its new fulfillment facilities will be powered by “state-of-the-art automation and robotics.”
“We’ve seen remarkable growth over the past few years, with a record number of members, and we’re excited to bring the experience of Sam’s Club to even more markets as we expand our footprint,” Sam’s Club CEO Kathryn McLay said in a statement in January. “And as we open new clubs in new locations, we’ll continue to innovate so that our members shop and save, whether in-person or online.”
Sam’s Club currently operates more than 600 warehouse clubs around the country.