Walmart Inc.’s (NYSE: WMT) unit in Mexico reported the company opened 134 new stores in that country in 2019, its largest expansion in Mexico in six years.
Walmart de Mexico y Centroamerica, or Walmex (MX:WALMEX), now runs 2,571 stores in Mexico, the largest number of stores outside the United States, the company said in its most recent month-to-month report.
In comparison, Walmart has opened only 20 new stores in the U.S. since 2018.
Many of Walmex’s new stores in Mexico are also part of the Bodega Aurrera discount chain, including Aurrera, Aurrera Express and Mi Bodega.
Walmex has stores all over Mexico, though the majority are huddled in central Mexico, in and around the cities of Mexico City, Guadalajara, Queretaro, Puebla and San Luis Potosi.
“We drove growth across all regions in Mexico. The north and south regions had the highest same-store sales growth, followed by the center and metro regions, which delivered softer growth due to the competitive dynamics and macro conditions in those regions,” Guilherme Loureiro, Walmex’s president and CEO, said during a conference call with analysts Dec. 3.
Walmex also operates 14 distribution centers in Mexico and announced plans for more — including e-commerce fulfillment centers in Guadalajara and Monterrey, and regular distribution centers in Mérida and Chihuahua.
The centers in Mérida and Chihuahua will be part of Walmart’s supply chain network into the U.S.
“We are excited about building an omnichannel supply chain for the future — opening up a new pipeline of new stores and setting us up for an accelerated e-commerce growth in Mexico,” Loureiro said during the conference call.
Walmex, based in Mexico City, now operates 3,407 stores in Mexico and Latin America, including Argentina, Nicaragua, Honduras, Chile, Guatemala, Costa Rica and El Salvador.
Walmart had a total of 5,358 stores throughout the U.S. as of October 2019, including more than 519 in Texas.