Amazon-Walmart battle heats up in Mexico

E-commerce giant is reportedly selling food and beverage to customers in Mexico

Amazon is taking on Walmart's Mexico operations by beginning sales of foods and beverages in the country, Reuters has reported.

The move, which will include snacks, sweets and wines, comes at a time when shopping online makes up only a fraction of total retail sales in the country, the news outlet stated. However, e-commerce sales have "grown swiftly," presenting a prime opportunity. All this as the e-commerce giant becomes the second publicly traded company to be worth US$1 trillion, hot on the heels of iPhone maker Apple.

A quick look at the food and beverage page on Amazon's Mexico site shows an array of shelf-stable foods and beverages, dairy products, vitamins and supplements, and beer, wines and spirits. More than 40 brands are listed, from Perrier and Bob's Red Mill to Sal de Pompa, Calidad Bueno and Grupo Modelo Mexico.

"We're committed to offering our clients as many products as we can," Fernando Ramirez, Amazon Mexico's senior product manager, said in a statement published by Reuters.

Earlier this year, Walmart International said it intended to expand its grocery e-commerce business in Mexico, and its CEO, Judith McKenna, said grocery delivery would "be an important part of that push," Reuters reported.

In the United States, Amazon originally launched free two-hour delivery from Whole Foods stores in February through its Prime Now delivery service, with the plan to begin in select markets and expand across the country through the rest of the year. This week, it expanded the service in Ohio, Oregon and New York, as well as the Washington D.C., metropolitan area.

Last year's purchase of the Whole Foods grocery chain gave Amazon hundreds of stores at which to promote its gadgets and offer discounts tied to Prime memberships. Amazon also has opened more than a dozen brick-and-mortar bookstores, and has plans for more cashier-less Amazon Go convenience stores.

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