Months after Walmart CEO Doug McMillon issued a warning about how rampant theft will impact its decion-making, the company announced its final two stores in Portland, Oregon, are closing at the end of the month.
“The decision to close these stores was made after a careful review of their overall performance. We consider many factors, including current and projected financial performance, location, population, customer needs, and the proximity of other nearby stores when making these difficult decisions. After we decide to move forward, our focus is on our associates and their transition, which is the case here,” a Walmart spokesperson told KPTV.
The decision to close the two remaining locations on March 24 comes after McMillon warned in December how the company may have to respond to address an uptick in retail crimes.
"Theft is an issue. It’s higher than what it has historically been,” he said on CNBC. “If that’s not corrected over time, prices will be higher and/or stores will close."
Commenting on the news, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said it's what happens when city leaders "refuse to enforce the rule of law" and allow mob rule.
All Portland Walmart stores to permanently close in late March.— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) March 5, 2023
This is what happens when cities refuse to enforce the rule of law.
It allows the mob to take over.
Businesses can't operate in that environment, and people can't live in it.https://t.co/LTkLfG1wC5
Walmart isn’t the only company to decide to call it quits in Portland over crime issues. Nike and Cracker Barrel shut down last year, and clothing store Rains PDX did the same, according to Fox Business, leaving a note on its door in November explaining why.
"Our city is in peril," the message said. "Small businesses (and large) cannot sustain doing business, in our city’s current state. We have no protection, or recourse, against the criminal behavior that goes unpunished. Do not be fooled into thinking that insurance companies cover losses. We have sustained 15 break-ins … we have not received any financial reimbursement since the 3rd."