Walmart to Sell Argentina Business After 25 Years in the Market
- by Chandler James
ARGENTINA - To view Walmart’s strategic moves is to look to the global scale in which the retailer reaches, the latest move being a step away from the Agrentenian market it has been active in for a quarter of a century. Walmart announced it is selling its business in Argentina to Latin American group Grupo de Narváez, entrusting new ownership to push the existing business even further.
“We are very proud of our Argentina business and associates as they’ve led and shown resilience throughout this year serving customers when they needed them most. We are excited by the local retail expertise the new owners bring to this already strong business, and we believe this deal creates the right structure to help it truly flourish for many years,” said Judith McKenna, President and Chief Executive Officer of Walmart International.
Grupo de Narváez has retail operations in Argentina, Ecuador, and Uruguay, bringing strong local expertise that makes the sale, according to Walmart, an exciting new chapter in the business’ 25-year history.
“We are very proud and excited about this new investment. We share the same values: a customer-centric philosophy, focus on operational excellence and commitment to the communities in which we operate. The company’s performance and dedication of its incredible associates through the COVID-19 pandemic have demonstrated the fundamental strength and resilience of the business, and we are thrilled to support the team, drive long-term growth, and create new opportunities for associates and suppliers across Argentina,” Fernando Minaudo, Grupo de Narváez CEO, said.
Under the new structure, Dolores Fernandez Lobbe will continue to support the business through a transition period, after which she will move into a new role within Walmart, which will continue to support the business through transition services and sourcing agreements under the new ownership. The company noted in a press release, however, that it will not retain an equity stake.
Walmart Argentina has grown to more than 90 stores and 9,000 associates under banners Changomas, Mi Changomas, Walmart Supercenter, and Punto Mayorista since it started in 1995. While Walmart Supercenters will be rebranded following a transition period, the Changomas, Mi Changomas, and Punto Mayorista banners will continue to serve customers in Argentina and the company said it will remain one of Argentina’s largest employers, continuing to work closely with suppliers to provide the best value for customers while maintaining its commitment to supporting domestic suppliers and small businesses.
The financial terms of the sale were not disclosed in the release, though both companies noted the dynamic retail environment and optimism for the chain’s continued success.