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|Founded||26 February 1947in Mexico City|
Number of locations
|Parent||Sears (1947 – 1997) |
Grupo Sanborns (2007 – present)
On 26 February 1947, the first Sears in Mexico was opened in Mexico City by the Sears, Roebuck and Company to an excited public. In the first three days of operation around 110,000 guests visited the store spending around $600,000 on goods. In its first week of operation, the store struggled to stock its shelves, requiring three airplanes to fly in more goods from a Texas warehouse owned by the parent company. Its introduction to the Mexican economy is seen by some as helping to usher in a consumer evolution in Mexico, shifting the nation's focus from nationalism and redistribution of wealth to happiness and individual self-realization.
In its first year of operation, the Mexico City store did around $16 million in business, almost twice as much as was expected by its parent company. However, just a few months after opening, in order to prevent a drain on the nation's foreign-currency reserves, Mexico barred some nonessential imports and raised tariffs on others. This impacted the Mexico City store tremendously, which was at the time importing around 90 percent of its merchandise.
This forced the store to create alliances with Mexican manufacturers, offering financial and technical aid to suppliers to meet its burgeoning demand for goods. It also bought interest in factories that were producing its merchandise. By 1949, Sears Mexico had around 2,500 Mexican suppliers furnishing some 80 percent of the goods in the Mexico City store.
A second and third Sears were opened in 1949 in Monterrey and Guadalajara, and by 1953 Sears had seven stores in Mexico and annual sales of more than $15 million and employed around 1,900 people. These employees received unheard of benefits from the company including: overtime, merit raises, cost-of-living allowances, paid vacations, retirement funds, access to company cafeterias, free medical treatment and medicines and discounts on purchases.
By 1956 there were 17 Sears stores in Mexico with a sales volume of around $25 million. There were around 3,200 employees at that time, all but 16 of which were Mexican citizens. Additionally, about 90 percent of the merchandise sold in its stores was made in Mexico.
On April 2, 1997, Sears formed a strategic alliance with Grupo Carso, owned by Mexican businessman Carlos Slim Helú, through which Sears agreed to sell 85% of its share of Sears Mexico to Grupo Carso, until 1997. As of 2007, Grupo Carso owned a 100% share of the company. Even though Sears unveiled a new lowercase logo in the United States in 2010, Sears Mexico changed its logo to a red variant of the standard Sears blue logo in 2013.
Despite the bankruptcy of its former parent company, the closing of many stores in the United States and Canada, and subsequent sale to ESL Investments, Sears Mexico still remains open for business due to different ownership.
- "Sears en México contrata a los retrasados mentales, o los vuelve…" (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 2009-11-09. Retrieved 2019-11-29.
- Moreno, Julio E. (December 2000). "Marketing in Mexico: Sears, Roebuck Company, J. Walter Thompson, and the Culture of North American Commerce in Mexico City during the 1940s". Enterprise & Society. 1 (4): 683–692. doi:10.1093/es/1.4.683. JSTOR 23699530.
- "Sears Roebuck de México, S.A. de C.V. History". Finding Universe. Finding Universe. n.d. Retrieved 26 March 2019.