Sam's Club Helps Out Small Businesses

Sam's Club’s 600 clubs have committed to showing 100,000 small businesses how to reduce costs and prosper. The Sam's Club Small Business Savings Drive is part of a campaign that will culminate during National Small Business Week (May 18-22). Associates are helping small business owners find at least $270 million in savings by comparing the prices of business-related products to similar items carried by Sam's Club.

"The success of small business is key to our nation's economic recovery and we want to be part of the solution," said Cindy Davis, EVP, Membership, Marketing and Ecommerce at Sam's Club. "Pennies matter more than ever for today's small business owner, and helping them find as much or more than thousands of dollars in savings has a real impact and can mean keeping a new employee, expanding or financing a startup."

Last month, President Obama proposed a small business recovery program that included tax and spending provisions of more than $1 billion, including $720 million for Small Business Administration (SBA) programs such as new loan guarantees, which have declined 57 percent in the first quarter of this year vs. last year, according to the SBA. Over the past decade, small businesses have generated 60 percent to 80 percent of new jobs annually and employ about half of U.S. workers.

"The Sam's Club Small Business Savings Drive is a great example of the opportunity large companies and small businesses have to work together to spur economic development and job creation, at a time when so many small businesses are affected by the tough economy," noted Aida Alvarez, former administrator of the Small Business Administration and board member of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Small business owners and operators, as well as entrepreneurs starting a business, can call 800-726-7258 to ask for help and arrange a visit from local Sam's Club associates. Additionally, features examples of cost comparisons savings, related resources and tips from business owners.

Last year, during National Small Business Week, Sam's Club ran a pilot cost comparison program that resulted in 5,300 invoice comparisons and found more than $3.5 million in savings on products available in its clubs. The company has pledged to refund any business membership at any time should it be unable to locate savings to the member’s satisfaction. Additionally, Sam's Club is offering a free one-day membership to any small business, good through May 25, 2009.

During this year’s National Small Business Week, Sam's Club will work with small business owners across the country as part of an annual appreciation event for its business members, including field associates, Home Office management and executive leaders.

Sam's Club estimates that over 600,000 small business owners or their employees shop its stores daily. As well as products, the retailer offers small business members access to affordable health insurance and other services such as merchant credit card processing solutions and time-saving solutions like online ordering via Click n' Pull.

A division of Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Sam's Club serves more than 47 million U.S. Members with locations nationwide and in Brazil, Canada, China, Mexico and Puerto Rico.
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