Wal-Mart counting on Latam success to drive US online strategy

jueves 12 de junio de 2014 08:42 GYT

By Siddharth Cavale

June 12 (Reuters) - Fernando Madeira comes to his new job as head of online business for Wal-Mart Stores Inc with a reputation as an e-commerce whiz, having engineered a surge in the retailer's online sales in Latin America.

In his enlarged role, the Brazilian company veteran will face a more formidable challenge - taking on Amazon.com Inc in the far-more developed U.S. online marketplace, where the world's biggest retailer is yet to make its mark.

Wal-Mart announced Madeira's promotion on Monday, two days after unveiling plans to integrate e-commerce with its sprawling network of brick-and-mortar stores.

Madeira's job, from next week, is to make that strategy work.

The goal of generating a bigger chunk of revenue from e-commerce has assumed more urgency for Wal-Mart as it struggles to revive sales in the United States.

The company's U.S. same-store sales have fallen for five quarters in a row.

Under Madeira's watch, Wal-Mart increased its online sales in Brazil at twice the rate of the growth in the overall online market, according to an internal memo obtained by Reuters.

Reasons for the surge included a sharp increase in the number of products available and improved order fulfillment - the process that starts with ordering and ends with delivery.   Continuación...