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Advent to drop Walmart brand from Brazilian supermarkets

Advent International Corp., the new owner of Walmart Inc.-branded supermarkets in Brazil, has decided to drop the U.S. retail giant's brand from the stores and rename them Grupo BIG, Reuters reported Aug. 12, citing a company announcement.

The private equity firm completed its acquisition of an 80% stake in Walmart's Brazilian division in August 2018.

In May, Walmart Brasil Ltda. discontinued its e-commerce operations in the country and decided to focus on its physical stores, converting 10 underperforming hypermarkets into wholesale stores Maxxi Atacado and another 10 into membership-only retail stores under the Sam's Club brand.

The report said nearly 100 Walmart-branded stores will be rebranded to BIG and BIG Bompreço, regional brands that Walmart Brasil already used in the past, while another 27 Walmart stores will be turned into cash-and-carry store Maxxi Atacado and membership-only retail store Sam's Club.

The new entity, Grupo BIG, is expected to see operating savings from the rebranding as the supermarket chain currently pays royalties to Walmart for the use of its brands, the report said.

The chain is looking to open 10 new Sam's Club outlets by August 2020 as part of its 1.2 billion reais investment plan in the next 18 months.

As of Aug. 12, US$1 was equivalent to 3.99 Brazilian reais.