Sam’s Club, founded in 1983, is a membership only, warehouse type store that is owned and operated by Walmart. The company is the 8th largest retailer in the US and is second in sales volume among warehouse/club type stores. It takes second place only to Costco, even though it has more retail locations than Costco.
The company has stores in 47 states, with Long Island, Vermont, and Oregon being the exceptions. There are also Sam’s Clubs in Mexico, Brazil, and China. Very much like Costco and the other warehouse stores, Sam’s Club mainly sells directly out of cartons or off pallets. Items are sold in bulk or multiple items will be taped together and sold at a discount. To buy at Sam’s Club, customers must purchase a yearly membership.
Sam’s Club began offering a Mastercard credit card in 2014, which can be used where ever Mastercard is accepted. The company has struggled against its competitor, Costco, and has laid off employees from underperforming stores from time to time.
In 2017, Sam’s Club reported annual revenue of $57 billion.
In January 2018, Walmart abruptly closed 63 Sam’s Club locations, putting approximately 11,000 people out of work. The following month, the company rolled out fewer membership choices and offered free shipping on almost everything they sell online.
The company announced in May 2019 that they would be eliminating tobacco products from some stores and increasing the minimum age for tobacco purchases to 21.
That same month, parent company Walmart announced that it would be forced to raise prices on nearly every item in the store if Trump’s tariff’s against China went into effect June 1st, 2019.