Marc Lore on His Way Out at Walmart?
According to a report from the New York Post, Marc Lore could be eying his exit from Walmart. Lore, the CEO of Walmart.com (and founder of Jet.com, which Walmart acquired for $3.3 billion in 2016), was noticeably absent from the retailer's discussion of its digital slowdown on a Tuesday conference call. Walmart reported this week that its e-commerce sales rose 23 percent last quarter, less than half the pace of previous quarters. Furthermore, Walmart announced that it will rein in subsidies of Jet.com's growth.
Total Retail's Take: These rumors are likely less about the slowdown in Walmart's digital business in last year's fourth quarter and more about Lore's cultural fit within the traditional brick-and-mortar retail organization. It would be hard to argue with the job Lore has done in growing Walmart's e-commerce business — this past quarter's 23 percent sales increase is the lowest gain since he joined the company in late 2016 — but does he fit in a business where brick-and-mortar is always (or at least for the foreseeable future) going to take top billing? He's an e-commerce entrepreneur, and he might be looking to take his talents elsewhere. However, one big reason why Lore might choose to remain at Walmart is that his contract stipulates that he receive incentives over the next five years if he remains employed by the company. I'm doubtful that one poor quarter is going to have Lore running for the exit. The challenge of growing Walmart's e-commerce business into a true contender to Amazon.com will be enough to keep him engaged — at least for the time being.