Walmart opened 79 new stores last year

This year it will begin offering free wireless in most of its Mexico stores

Walmart México opened 79 new stores in Mexico last year, most of them under the Aurrera, Aurrera Express and Mi Bodega brands. But it is also angling for more online sales.

The United States-based retailer opened 29 stores in central Mexico, 22 in western states, 18 in the north and 10 in southeastern states, creating 4,619 new jobs and 9,120 indirect sources of employment.

Two new Sam’s Club stores opened in Mexico City, representing a reactivation of the brand: the last new Sam’s Club opened its doors in 2014.

Walmart is betting that 2018 will be a good one for e-commerce. It announced last month it would install free wifi in all but one of its brands by mid-year.

Those brands are Walmart Supercenter, Superama, Sam’s Club, Bodega Aurrera, Mi Bodega Aurrera and Bodega Aurrera Express.

Of those, all but the warehouse-style Bodega Aurrera Express will offer wireless connectivity to customers. The service is already available at members-only Sam’s Club stores.

The retailer hopes that free access will help internet-resistant shoppers become more comfortable online and ultimately boost its nascent e-commerce business, which represented less than 1% of third-quarter sales.

Bringing wifi to stores and customers will also allow Walmart to collect data from users of its website, helping to personalize offerings in stores and online with the ability to quickly adjust inventory and prices.

Source: El Financiero (sp), Reuters (en)

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