(Corrects last paragraph to reflect that Sam's Club serves
500,000 small business customers a day, not "has 500,000 small
NEW YORK, Sept 10 Sam's Club, Wal-Mart Stores
Inc's warehouse division, will accept American Express
credit cards starting Oct. 1, in addition to the other
cards it already accepts in its stores, the companies said on
Sam's Club will also accept Amex's Bluebird prepaid debit
card, sold in Wal-Mart stores, which was launched in 2012 as an
alternative to bank checking accounts that can carry high fees.
American Express lost a crucial relationship with Sam's Club
competitor Costco Wholesale Corp earlier this year.
Costco stopped accepting Amex cards exclusively, and switched to
Visa instead. Citigroup Inc will issue Costco Visa credit
Amex said in February the loss of Costco would hurt its
earnings for the next two years, and threaten nearly 8 percent
of the worldwide annual spending on its cards.
Sam's Club says it is the eighth largest U.S. retailer, with
more than 650 locations in the United States and Puerto Rico. It
accepts MasterCard Inc's MasterCard and Discover
Financial Services Inc's Discover card in its physical
stores. Online, Sam's Club already accepts American Express, in
addition to Mastercard, Discover, and Visa Inc's Visa.
Wal-Mart's main stores already accept American Express.
The warehouse retailer serves 500,000 small business
customers a day, an important group of clients for American
Express, said Anre Williams, president of global merchant
services at American Express.
(Reporting by Dan Wilchins)