UPDATE 2-Walmex gets new CEO from Wal-Mart Brazil
(Adds details on Wal-Mart Brazil store closures)
MEXICO CITY Jan 14 (Reuters) - Mexico's Walmex, the country's biggest retailer, on Thursday named Guilherme Loureiro its new chief executive officer from Feb. 1.
Loureiro was previously CEO of Wal-Mart in Brazil, where the retailer has recently shuttered more than 10 percent of its stores as part of a restructuring effort. He will take over from Enrique Ostale as CEO for Mexico and Central America, while Ostale will continue in his role as chief executive of Wal-Mart Latin America, the company said in a statement.
Ostale was CEO of Walmex for just over a year, after previous CEO Scot Rank stepped down in December 2014.
Rank, who now leads dairy company Grupo Lala, led Walmex at the time of a 2012 New York Times report that alleged the retailer bribed local officials to open stores faster. He stayed for around two years after it was published.
A federal probe into the allegations has found few major offenses, and is likely to result in a much smaller case than investigators expected, the Wall Street Journal reported in October, citing people familiar with the situation.
Walmex, which operates in Mexico and Central America, ended the year with 3,066 stores, compared to 558 in Brazil.
Doug McMillion, chief executive of the U.S.-based parent company Wal-Mart Stores Inc, told investors last year that he would review the retailer's global operations and "close the stores that should be closed."
Walmex shares closed up 1.78 percent at 44.00 pesos on Thursday. (Reporting by Elinor Comlay; Editing by James Dalgleish, Bernard Orr)
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