Walmart Canada To Invest $3.5bn Locally
Walmart Canada has announced major investment plans for the next five years. The retail giant has declared itself in the position to invest at least $3.5 billion in improving its online service offerings as well as in-store service offerings and payments systems. It furthermore plans on completely renovating 150 of its Canada-based stores and also to build two all-new distribution centres.
Not only will the proposed investment create in-business value, but it’s also expected to create hundreds of local construction jobs, as well as create partnerships with local Canadian high-tech companies.
Upgrades And More
Canadian tech providers will benefit greatly from the future technology projects planned for the chain’s local stores. Walmart Canada plans to install mobile no-contact payment devices all throughout its entire store profile. Mobile payments systems, said the group, will allow customers to pay for their purchases from anywhere in the store.
Other planned upgrades include the implementation of merchandise pick-up services at 270 of its local Walmart branches. This number represents roughly 70% of the retail giant’s Canadian stores.
As far as physical store renovations go, Walmart has said it expects to have finalised these by at least 2024 (three years).
Investing In Future Growth
The company says it will be spending up to $1.1 billion building two all-new distribution centres – one in Vaughan, Ontario, and the other in Surrey, British Columbia. Two new distribution centres will help speed up the overall flow of products. In addition to the construction of the new centres, Walmart will furthermore be making considerable upgrades to its existing distribution hub in Cornwall, Ontario.
The expectation, says Walmart Canada President and CEO Horacio Barbeito, is that the $3.5 billion investment in local Canadian stores and infrastructure will set the retail giant on a path towards further growth and local success. The idea behind the mammoth investment is to create an even better experience for Walmart Canada customers and partners.
Boosting Local Employment
The greatest contribution will however be the creation of hundreds of new in-store and construction jobs. Since several major Canadian businesses have had to lay off hundreds of their employees, Canada is currently facing a major unemployment crisis.
The country’s unemployment rate reached a record 13.7% in June – which is the highest it’s been since December 1982. An estimated 3 million jobs were cut in March and April combined, with about 2.5 million employees having had their hours considerably decreased.
Projects such as that planned by Walmart Canada can potentially go a long way toward relieving the employment plight of ordinary Canadians.