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Walmart Undertakes Largest International E-Commerce Deal in History

As a managing director of AlixPartners, Matthew Hamory draws on more than two decades of experience in retail operations and strategy. In September 2018, Matthew Hamory shared his views on Walmart’s recent endeavors toward international expansion. “Even in the struggles [it has] had, [Walmart’s] still doing better than any U.S. retailer has done in the modern era,” he said.

Walmart International President and CEO Judith McKenna led the mega-retailer’s latest expansion effort, which involved acquiring a 77 percent stake in India’s largest online retailer, Flipkart, in August. The $16 billion investment marks the biggest purchase in not only Walmart’s history, but also the entire e-commerce sector. Furthermore, it represents a significant shift in the company’s traditional approach of focusing on a global footprint and opening physical storefronts.

Even before this investment, Walmart topped the charts in international revenue at $118 billion. Yet, its exponential growth in the global market went largely unnoticed by most institutional investors. This began to change in 2018, as the company undertook an assortment of international deals.

Walmart International’s other transactions in 2018 include merging its UK business Asda with J Sainsbury and off-loading most of its operations in Brazil to a private equity firm.


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