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Walmart plans on scaling back its footprint, decides shutting 3 tech hubs


Walmart Inc. will close three of its 11 US technology hubs and require affected workers to relocate, scaling back its footprint after unveiling an expansion plan last year.

Tech offices will be shut in Austin, Texas; Portland, Oregon; and Carlsbad, California, Global Chief Technology Officer Suresh Kumar said in a memo last week. Tech employees will also have to work in the office at least two days a week, although some roles may be converted into remote positions.

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“We’ve made the decision to focus our tech team’s presence within select locations,” a Walmart representative said in a statement Monday. “We hope to relocate or allow for remote work for all affected associates.”

The decision follows job cuts at major technology companies including Microsoft Corp., Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Meta Platforms Inc., which are facing a weaker economic outlook. It also comes as companies have been pushing employees to put in more face time at the office.

Walmart is closing the three hubs less than a year after Kumar announced plans to add new tech centers in Atlanta and Toronto and hire 5,000 staffers to work on cybersecurity, software engineering, data science and other areas. The company’s tech operation, which also has six hubs outside the US, employed more than 20,000 worldwide as of March.

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The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer will pay to relocate employees in the tech centers it’s closing. Those who quit as a result of the decision will receive severance pay, according to the memo. The tech office changes were reported earlier by the Wall Street Journal.

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