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Flipkart ‘The Big Billion Days’ sales lift Walmart’s gross margins

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Walmart International’s net sales during the third quarter were $26.7 billion in constant currency terms, while its gross profit rate was up 151 bps

New Delhi: US retail giant Walmart’s consolidated gross margins improved in the third quarter (August-October), helped by ‘The Big Billion Days’ sales by its Indian e-commerce arm Flipkart.

The festive season, which fell in the third and fourth quarters, boosted Walmart International’s sales by 13%, said an earnings statement from US-based retailer Bentonville.

Walmart follows a February-January calendar and its third quarter ended on October 31.

“Consolidated gross margin rate up 32 bps positively affected by a slight improvement for Walmart US and timing of Flipkart’s The Big Billion Days event, which flipped from Q3 last year to Q4 this year,” said Walmart.

Its consolidated revenue for the quarter was at $160.8 billion, up 5.2% and 4.3% in constant currency.

Walmart International business reported a strong growth by its Mexican business Walmex and China market. However, its e-commerce sales declined 3% in the international business.

“Continued strong growth in food and consumables as well as increased private brands penetration across markets,” it said.

Besides, Walmart International also reported an inventory growth of 15.8% “driven by timing shift of festive events and currency rate fluctuation”.

Walmart International operates in 19 countries outside the US and has more than 5,100 retail units.

However, it also added Walmart International’s overall and e-commerce sales growth “negatively affected by the timing of Flipkart’s The Big Billion Days event”.

Flipkart’s ‘The Big Billion Days’ event started on October 8 and ended on October 15, witnessing a record 1.4 billion customers visit on its platform during its flagship festival sales event.

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