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Mercado Libre Surpasses Expectations With Strong Q3 Earnings

Latin American eCommerce platform Mercado Libre reported third-quarter earnings that surpassed expectations and showcased its success in the region.

The company’s income from operations reached a record high of $685 million in the quarter, up 131% year over year (YoY), Mercado Libre said in a Wednesday (Nov. 1) letter to shareholders. The increase was supported by direct contribution (DC) growth of 157% in Brazil and 106% in Mexico which, all in, accounted for 65% of DC and 82% of incremental DC YoY.

During the earnings call, CFO Martin de los Santos attributed the strong showing to an uptick in revenue from Brazil and Mexico.

“With strong momentum across geographies in both commerce and FinTech, MELI’s revenue growth accelerated,” de los Santos said. “Mexico was particularly strong, with revenue growing above 60% year-on-year, while Brazil also posted a great performance with around 40% growth. These two countries have again increased their contribution to our total revenues.

“During Q3, in the commerce business, we saw acceleration in GMV [gross merchandise value] and items sold growth in the three main geographies, with higher items per buyer,” he added. “This higher user engagement comes from continued experience improvements, especially on the logistics front, where we reached 48% of fulfillment penetration and offered better delivery promises, improving conversions, and the further development of categories through technology. As a result, we had a record of 50 million users and market share gains, especially in Brazil and Mexico.”

Richard Cathcart, Mercado Libre’s investor relations officer, highlighted the firm’s relaunch of its loyalty program, MELI+, during the recent quarter. He noted that the new rollout came with a simpler structure, better shipping benefits and exclusive video and audio content, which would enable the firm to increase user engagement with MELI’s ecosystem.

“In August we launched a big marketing campaign to raise awareness of the program, and initial results give us confidence that MELI+ complements our value proposition, bringing extensive benefits to even more Mercado Libre users,” Cathcart said. 

The eCommerce platform appointed de los Santos as CFO in August, PYMNTS reported at the time.

De los Santos first joined Mercado Libre in 2008 and has held various positions, most recently as senior vice president of the credits division. He launched that business unit and has scaled it over the last seven years. 

In announcing the appointment, Mercadeo Libre CEO Marcos Galperin said de los Santos was an accomplished leader with a track record of “driving transformational strategies.”