January 11, 2013, 3:33 PM

Walmart Latin America hires a new CEO

Enrique Ostalé, president and CEO of Walmart Chile, takes over on March 1, Wal-Mart says.

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Enrique Ostalé

President and CEO of Walmart Chile Enrique Ostalé has been named executive vice president, president and CEO of Walmart Latin America, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. announced today. He will begin the role on March 1, replacing Eduardo Solórzano, who will remain chairman of the board of Walmart de México, the retailer says.

Ostalé will oversee the retailer’s operations in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Nicaragua, including 373,000 employees, Wal-Mart says. He will collaborate with Fernando Madeira, president and CEO of Walmart Latin America Global eCommerce, who joined Wal-Mart in August, a spokesman says. While Brazil is the largest online retail business for Wal-Mart in the region, the retail chain also operates e-commerce sites in Argentina, Chile and Mexico, the spokesman adds. Walmart is No. 179 in the Internet Retailer Top 300 Latin America.

Ostalé joined Wal-Mart in 1989 as chief financial officer of Distribución y Servicio D&S S.A., which later became Walmart Chile, the retailer says. He left in 2000 to serve for a year as CEO of El Mercurio Online, the web site for Chile's El Mercurio newspaper, then from 2002-2006 was a dean of the business school of Chile’s Adolfo Ibáñez University, Wal-Mart says. In 2006 he returned to Wal-Mart in his current role as president and CEO of Walmart Chile.

Executive vice president and chief operating officer of Walmart de México Gian Carlo Nucci will replace Ostalé in Chile, the retailer says.

“Eduardo, Enrique and Gian Carlo have each made contributions that have fostered the development of Walmart in Latin America,” says Doug McMillon, president and CEO of Walmart International. “Enrique’s leadership in Chile has been key to both the successful integration of D&S with Walmart following our 2009 acquisition, and also to Walmart Chile’s ongoing success.”

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