The online shopping exec Walmart hired to take on Amazon is leaving

Posted January 15, 2021 11:51 a.m. EST

— The executive hired to help boost Walmart's e-commerce business to compete with Amazon is leaving the company.

Marc Lore, who joined the company in 2016 after selling his online startup to Walmart, is retiring from Walmart at the end of January, the company announced Friday.

Lore, the chief executive of Walmart's US e-commerce arm, initially led the redesign of and helped expand Walmart's online merchandise options from around 10 million items when he started to more than 80 million items, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said in memo to employees Friday.

Walmart's stock was down 1% midday Friday.

Lore is leaving shortly after the company merged its once separate online division into its larger business. After Lore retires on January 31, the online business will report to Walmart's US chief John Furger, the company said in a filing.

"With our structural changes behind us, we have concluded it's time for Marc to transition out of his everyday role at Walmart," McMillon said in the memo.

Lore will remain a strategic adviser to Walmart through September. He told Recode that his next venture will be a multi-decade project to build "a city of the future" supported by "a reformed version of capitalism."

Walmart bought up online brands such as Bonobos and Moosejaw under Lore's tenure as it sought to grow online and reach younger shoppers. However, it said it was discontinuing in 2019.

Walmart's online business, while still much smaller than Amazon's, has grown rapidly in recent years. Walmart said in November that it offers curbside pickup from 3,700 stores and home delivery from 2,700.

"Lore can leave Walmart and effectively declare victory," said Andrew Lipsman, retail analyst at eMarketer. "He's had a tremendously successful run, helping drive huge growth in sales and market share in Walmart's previously laggard e-commerce business."

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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