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Walmart Connect and Flipkart advertising fuel growth of Walmart’s ad business in Q2

Bentonville, Arkansas-headquartered retail giant Walmart said that its global advertising business grew by nearly 30% led by its media business Walmart Connect and Flipkart advertising. 

Walmart is the largest shareholder in ecommerce giant Flipkart after it acquired 77% stake in the company for $16 billion in 2018. Flipkart was last valued at $37.6 billion when it raised $3.6 billion from SoftBank, Tiger Global, Walmart and others in July 2021. 

The retailer reported its Q2 earnings for FY 2023 on Tuesday, with total revenue rising by 8.4% to $152.86 billion from Q2 of FY 2022. The operating income fell to $6.8 billion for the quarter, down 6.8% from the year-ago period.

During the earnings call, Walmart Executive Vice President and CFO John David Rainey said that both Flipkart and PhonePe continue to meet expectations as the team is gearing up for Flipkart’s flagship sale event in October, the Big Billion Days sale. 

“PhonePe continued to see strong growth with an annualised Total Payment Value (TPV) of over $830 billion, reaching monthly transactions of 3.1 billion,” he added. Later during the call, he said that the fintech entity was poised to be the largest digital payments company outside of China. 

The show of confidence comes at a time when PhonePe is undergoing restructuring after it shut down its Singapore-headquartered parent entity, and is being carved out as a separate business from Flipkart to raise additional capital.

Flipkart too is reported to be in talks to make its public market debut in 2023 at a valuation of nearly $70 billion. 

Walmart International’s business saw an increase of 5.7% in net sales to $24.4 billion. The three largest markets for its international business include Mexico, Canada, and China. The company also touched upon its partnership with video-streaming service Paramount Plus as an add-on for customers on its membership program, Walmart Plus.

Walmart revised its FY 2023 guidance with a consolidated net sales growth of 4.5%. The company also said that it expected headwinds of about $2.1 billion in the second half of the year. Adjusted earnings per share are expected to decline 8% to 10% excluding divestitures. 

Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta