Walmart to invest $756 million in Brazil

NEW YORK — Wal-Mart Stores said that by the end of the year it will have invested the equivalent of approximately $756 million to expand its operations in Brazil.

Marcos Samaha, president of Wal-Mart's Brazilian subsidiary, said in a Tuesday statement that 1.2 billion reals ($755 million) will be used to build 80 stores, renovate existing locations and improve logistics.

Samaha says that the company's expansion in Brazil, which is Latin America’s biggest economy, due to its "excellent economic growth potential." Brazil’s economy grew 7.5% in 2010 and may expand 4% in 2011, according to the quarterly inflation report published March 30 by Brazil’s central bank.

During the, past five years Wal-Mart has invested some $3.8 billion in Brazil to build 177 stores.