Mercado Libre, the largest e-commerce player in the region, plans to invest US$275 million in Mexico, with US$100 million being allocated to the opening of two new distribution centers in Cuautitlán Izcalli and Tepotzotlán.
“The investment reflects the importance that Mexico has for us and our customers and sellers,” said Marcos Galperin, Founder and CEO, at a press conference.
The centers are expected to create 3,000 new jobs, according to Galperin. The remaining US$175 million will be invested into the improvement of the service experience, such as the loyalty program and the provision of free shipping and returns.
Galperin said that the strategy of offering these services free of charge has allowed the platform to grow in Mexico. Today, Mercado Libre has 25 million users and records 7 million visits per day.
While Mexico is the third largest income generating market for the company, following Brazil and Argentina, in 3Q17 and 4Q17 the country reported the highest growth in sales, at 91% and 136% respectively.
Mexico’s eCommerce market has an estimated value of US$7.5 billion dollars, but only represents 2.3% of the total value of the retail industry. This is expected to almost double by 2020 to US$13.2 billion.
Last year, Mercado Libre announced just a US$100 million investment in Mexico, citing the country’s growing number of smartphone users as a sign of impending growth in e-commerce — it seems the company followed through on the promise and will continue to support its operations in the country.