Sam’s Club Unveils Plans for Design Studio in Arkansas

Retailer is at work on its 1st dedicated space for innovation
Emily Crowe, Progressive Grocer
Sam's Club Design Studio
The Sam's Club Design Studio will offer associates a space for innovation, product testing and more.

In today’s ever-changing retail landscape, companies are increasingly pressed to offer shoppers innovative new experiences while also maintaining their bottom line. Sam’s Club is taking a giant leap in that direction with its newly announced Design Studio, which will be located on its Bentonville, Ark., campus and will offer associates a dedicated space for innovating, creating and collaborating.

Indeed, the studio will serve as an idea factory where anyone in the company can test, exchange and collaborate on projects that push the Sam’s Club business business forward. According to Martin Granstrom, VP and head of product design and research, the pandemic was a big reason for the decision to build such a space.

“At Sam’s we were ready to help our members quickly with new innovations like Scan & Ship, Curbside Pickup, and Scan and Go,” Grandstrom wrote in a company blog post. “We also learned in order to expand and meet this new omni demand from our members we had to evolve the way we deliver product, design and service.”

Granstrom also explained that having a large collaborative space allows for easier collaboration with external partners, puts innovators in the mindset of creation instead of work and makes physical product and hardware testing easier than ever. Further, the Design Studio will help Sam’s Club democratize innovation and more easily integrate physical and digital design.

“We are still the experiment Sam Walton started in 1983, and it will always be our goal at Sam’s Club to create the most seamless and convenient user experiences,” Granstrom wrote. “For us, our Design Studio announcement officially marks innovation being woven into our company’s fabric for the future.”

Earlier this month, Sam’s Club revealed a partnership and first-to-market application programming interface integration of its Members Access Platform (MAP) with Pacvue, an enterprise software suite that enables brands, sellers and agencies to manage their e-commerce business. The partnership will allow brands to better reach and engage with Sam’s Club members at the key moment of discovery and purchase.

Sam’s Club, a division of Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart Inc., operates nearly 600 clubs in the United States and Puerto Rico. Each week, approximately 230 million customers and members visit Walmart’s more than 10,500 stores and numerous e-commerce websites under 46 banners in 24 countries, with approximately 2.3 million associates worldwide. Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America, while Sam’s Club ranks eighth.

Sneak Peek: Sam's Club Design Studio in Bentonville, Ark.

This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds