International

Logistics Services And Lending Services Bow Via MercadoLibre

MercadoLibre, the online marketplace serving Argentina, is boosting its presence in areas such as lending and logistics. Those areas, Reuters reported on Tuesday, had once been the province of large financial firms.

Through this expansion into lending and logistics, the aim is to increase market share in Brazil, reported the newswire. The firm already has presence in Brazil, which is half of the company’s business. The ambitions, said COO Stelleo Tolda in an interview with Reuters, should bring MercadoLibre to see revenues exceed those of B2W Cia Varejo SA, currently the largest eCommerce player in the country and owner of the Submarino and Shoptime marketplaces. That leapfrog in competitive top lines could take place as early as this year, the executive said. The firms will look to offer pickup services for larger customers that in turn use MercadoLibre to sell their wares.

“There is still a lot of room for everyone to grow in Brazil,” Tolda told Reuters. “Brazil is more like a cake that is getting bigger than a market where you have to steal slices from others in order to grow.”

In other areas, said Reuters, the company is looking to extend working capital via credit to smaller firms in Brazil and Mexico. That strategy was outlined by Ignacio Caride, MercadoLibre’s director general in Mexico.

In Brazil, eCommerce is slated to be about 12 percent higher in 2017, as measured by year-over-year growth, to roughly $15.3 billion, as tabulated by market research firm Ebit.

That tally does not, in fact, include MercadoLibre, said Reuters, which has seen $844 million in revenues gleaned through 18 countries where it operates throughout Latin America and also Portugal. The latest sales figures are ahead 30 percent year on year.

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