Walmart is reportedly discontinuing the use of its Express brand, instead rebranding its Walmart Express stores as Neighborhood Markets, IDG Online reported.
The news of the rebrand comes as Walmart is set to aggressively expand its small format stores across the U.S., with approximately 270- 300 small stores scheduled to open during the fiscal year, doubling the initial forecast of 120-150 stores.
Future small format stores will also open under the Neighborhood Markets brand. While historically Neighborhood Markets average about 40,000 square feet, and Walmart Express at 12,000 square feet, both formats typically serve the same shopping missions.
This move could allow for a bigger presence for produce and fresh foods within the smaller format stores.
“Customers’ needs and expectations are changing. They want to shop when they want and how they want, and we are transforming our business to meet their expectations,” Bill Simon, Walmart U.S.’s former president and CEO said in February. “Customers appreciate the broad assortment of our supercenters for their stock-up trips as well as our small store formats for fill-in trips. By unlocking this growth opportunity and further combining our supercenters and small store formats with an unlimited selection available through ecommerce, we provide our customers with anytime, anywhere access to our brand.”
Stay tuned to CSD’s October issue on more on Walmart’s expansion plans.