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Walmart India fires 56 execs as wholesale expansion struggles

Walmart Inc.'s Indian arm cut 56 executive jobs, eight of which were senior management roles, as it struggles to expand its wholesale operations in the country, Reuters reported Jan. 13, citing President and CEO Krish Iyer.

"We are also looking for ways to operate more efficiently, which requires us to review our corporate structure to ensure that we are organized in the right way," Iyer said.

The newswire reported that most of the employees that were let go were from the company's real estate division, which was in charge of the wholesale expansion that did not generate the growth anticipated.

One of three people familiar with the matter reportedly told Reuters that the job cuts were a result of Walmart India's shift to e-commerce from brick-and-mortar retailing.

However, Iyer denied that the big-box retailer was going to exit its physical store operations, adding that it has made "significant investments" in both its offline and online businesses.

Walmart operates 28 wholesale stores in India, through which it sells goods to small shopkeepers but not directly to consumers.