Wal-Mart to Open 28 New Units in Brazil This Year

Wal-Mart Brazil The Wal-Mart Brazil supermarket chain will invest 400 million reais (US$ 203.8 million) in northeast Brazil before the end of this year. The funds will be invested in the opening of 19 new stores, which will create 2,500 direct jobs. The information was supplied by Vicente Trius, CEO at Wal-Mart Brazil.

Of the new units, eight will be in the state of Pernambuco, seven in Bahia, three in Rio Grande do Norte, and one in Ceará. In addition to the opening of new stores, the retail chain is also modernizing its existing units. During the last three years, more than 150 million reais (US$ 76.4 million) were invested in the Brazilian Northeast. This year, around 70 million reais (US$ 35.6 million) should be spent on modernization.

"Older stores received new premises, equipment and services, to provide even more satisfaction to customers, and well being to employees," Trius explained, during a meeting with executives at the American Chamber of Commerce in Recife, last week.

Across Brazil, the Wal-Mart chain should open 28 new units, including those in the Northeast, as well as 19 drugstores by the end of this year. The total investment will be 1 billion reais (US$ 509.6 million). With the new stores, the group estimates that over 6,000 direct and 15,000 indirect jobs will be generated in the country.

The 28 new stores include 9 hypermarkets, 5 supermarkets, 2 Sam's Clubs, 10 Todo Dia soft discount stores and 2 Maxxi cash & carry.

Wal-Mart opened its first two Supercenters and two Sam's Clubs in Brazil in 1995. Thirty more stores have been opened since, including two Todo Dia stores, a neighborhood format designed specifically for Brazilian customers. In March 2004 Wal-Mart acquired 118 Bompreço stores and in December 2005 the company bought 140 Sonae stores.

Anba, Bzz

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