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Mercado Libre

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MercadoLibre, Inc.
Native name
Mercado Libre (Spanish)
Mercado Livre (Portuguese)
Company typePublic
FoundedAugust 2, 1999; 24 years ago (1999-08-02)[1]
FounderMarcos Galperin
Area served
Key people
ServicesOnline marketplace and e-commerce payment system
RevenueIncrease US$14.5 billion (2023)
Increase US$1.82 billion (2023)
Increase US$987 million (2023)
Total assetsIncrease US$17.6 billion (2023)
Total equityIncrease US$3.07 billion (2023)
Number of employees
58,313 (2023)
Footnotes / references

MercadoLibre, Inc. (literally "free market" in Spanish, and known as Mercado Livre in Portuguese) is an Argentine company headquartered in Montevideo, Uruguay and incorporated in Delaware in the United States that operates online marketplaces dedicated to e-commerce and online auctions. As of 2016, Mercado Libre had 174.2 million users in Latin America,[3] making it the region's most popular e-commerce site by number of visitors.[4] The company has operations in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.[5] In 2023 Time included Mercado Libre in the list of the 100 most influential companies in the world.[6]


Mercado Libre was founded in 1999 in Argentina.[7][5] Founder and CEO Marcos Galperin established the company while attending Stanford University. He acquired funding from John Muse, co-founder of HM Capital Partners.[8][9] Mercado Libre received additional funding from JPMorgan Partners, Flatiron Partners, Goldman Sachs, GE Capital, and Banco Santander Central Hispano. In 1999, Mercado Libre was chosen as an Endeavor company.[10]

In September 2001, online auction company eBay purchased a 19.5% stake in the company.[8] eBay sold its stake in Mercado Libre in 2016, but the companies continue to collaborate to expand eBay sellers into Latin America.[11][12] eBay opened its first branded store on the Mercado Libre marketplace from Chile in March 2017.[13]

The following month, Mercado Libre acquired iBazar Como, the Brazilian subsidiary of eBay's earlier acquisition, iBazar S.A.[14] In 2006, MercadoLibre.com launched new operations in Costa Rica, Panama, and Dominican Republic.

In August 2007, Mercado Libre became the first Latin American technology company to be listed on the NASDAQ, under the ticker MELI.[5][8] Mercado Libre acquired competitor DeRemate's operations in August 2008.[15] Mercado Libre also acquired Classified Media Group (CMG) in 2008. CMG established the Latin American e-commerce portals tucarro.com and tuinmueble.com.[16]

In 2011, the company transitioned its platform to open source technology. The transition allowed application programming interface (API) developers to expand the platform's solutions and services.[17] In 2013, Mercado Libre launched the MeLi Commerce Fund, dedicated to investing in technology startups that create software using Mercado Libre's APIs.[18] By August 2016, the fund had invested US$1.5 million in 15 companies in Argentina, Brazil and Mexico.[19][20] Mercado Libre acquired Portal Inmobiliario, a Chilean classified ad website, in 2014.[21] In 2015, Mercado Libre announced its acquisition of Metroscúbicos.com, the portal of Mexico-based real estate company Grupo Expansión.[22]

In 2016, Mercado Libre relocated its Brazilian headquarters to new offices in São Paulo, Brazil. The 17,000 square meter complex, named Melicidade, held a cafeteria, auditorium, gym, beauty parlor, meeting and training rooms, and a recreation area.[23][24] In March 2016, Mercado Libre announced its expansion into Córdoba, Argentina with its new software center.[25] Mercado Libre opened its first Colombian office in Bogotá in October 2016. It was the company's fourth customer service center in Latin America,[7][26] following centers in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay.[27]

In 2019, Mercado Libre opened its first distribution centers in Argentina, Brazil and Mexico.[28]

In March 2020, Mercado Libre announced its new distribution centers in Chile[29] and Colombia.[30] In June 2020, Mercado Libre announced its new software center in Colombia.[31]

In March 2021, Mercado Libre announced an investment of $1.8 billion in its Brazilian operations.[32]


Mercado Libre operates under five main business units. MarketPlace is its platform for users to sell products, Mercado Pago is its payment platform for online sales, Mercado Publicado is the advertising portion of Mercado Libre, Mercado Shops is a tool designed to enhance the platform's overall ecosystem,[33] and Mercado Crédito is the company's credit line.[34]

Mercado Libre's MarketPlace is a platform designed to match buyers and sellers. Customers bid for items or pay a set price for offered products. Items are delivered after payment, and users can provide feedback.[35] 3,000 official stores or brands work with Mercado Libre.[36]

Mercado Libre also runs a real estate and motors division under the name Mercado Libre Classificados. Realtors pay a monthly fee to list properties and automobiles on the Mercado Libre platform.[37]

Mercado Libre launched MercadoPago, a secure payment system, to diversify payment options.[38] MercadoPago processed 138.7 million transactions in 2016, which was a 73% improvement from 2015.[36] Launched in 2012, MercadoShops was designed to allow small and medium-sized companies to open virtual stores on their existing websites. The stores feature integration with social network sites.[39] In October 2014, a mobile app was released for MercadoPago which used a credit card reader to allow charges to be processed using a tablet or smartphone using a QR code.[38][40] The company expanded MercadoPago into Colombia in July 2016.[41]

Mercado Crédito's credit process works with buyers and sellers. Rate types for credit lines are determined through a borrower profile.[42]


  1. ^ "MercadoLibre.com WHOIS, DNS, & Domain Info - DomainTools". WHOIS. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  2. ^ "2023 Annual Report (Form 10-K)". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. February 23, 2024.
  3. ^ "The Free Market portal sold 181.2 million products in 2016". La Republica. March 6, 2017.
  4. ^ "Most popular online retailers in Latin America". Statista. Retrieved April 28, 2016.
  5. ^ a b c "Mercado Libre will celebrate its17th birthday with discounts of up to 70%". La Republica. September 9, 2016.
  6. ^ "TIME100 Most Influential Companies 2023: Mercado Libre". Time. June 21, 2023. Retrieved June 26, 2023.
  7. ^ a b "Mercado Libre opens offices and customer service center in Colombia". Terra. October 19, 2016. Archived from the original on October 21, 2016. Retrieved May 21, 2017.
  8. ^ a b c Irene Caselli (October 12, 2014). "The man behind the eBay of Latin America". BBC News.
  9. ^ Tom Metcalf, Blake Schmidt (September 28, 2016). "Argentina Sees First Tech Billionaire in Macri Renaissance". Bloomberg Technology.
  10. ^ "Endeavor Entrepreneur Marcos Galperin on Mercado Libre (World Economic Forum report)". Endeavor. May 25, 2011.
  11. ^ Vanessa Page (October 14, 2016). "eBay to Sell Stake in Mercado Libre". Investopedia.
  12. ^ "eBay Selling 20% Stake in Mercado Libre". Portada. October 17, 2016.
  13. ^ Axel Christiansen Z. (March 14, 2017). "EBay Store arrices in Chile through Mercado Libre". La Tercera.
  14. ^ Paul Sawers (October 13, 2016). "eBay divests majority of its stake in Latin American e-commerce giant Mercado Libre". Venture Beat.
  15. ^ "MercadoLibre buys DeRemate's operations". Clarin. August 27, 2008.
  16. ^ "Officialized the sale of TuCarro.com and TuInmueble.com to Mercado Libre". Salude Technologia. January 26, 2008.
  17. ^ "Mercado Libre Opens to Developers". InfoTechnology. April 27, 2011.
  18. ^ "Mercado Libre reports 37% growth in electronic commerce in Latin America". Portada. August 6, 2013.
  19. ^ Gabriela Samela (August 8, 2016). "In search of innovation, big companies launch their accelerators". Clarín.
  20. ^ Diego Dávila (October 12, 2016). "Mercado Libre targets entrepreneurs". La Voz.
  21. ^ "Mercado Libre buys Real Estate Portal and GuiaDinmuebles in USD $40 million". FayerWayer. April 15, 2014.
  22. ^ "Terms & Conditions". El Economista. April 22, 2015.
  23. ^ "Free Market in São Paulo: a small town with an Argentine flavor". Clarin. January 30, 2017.
  24. ^ Cláudio Florenzano. "Mercado Livre inaugurates a new headquarters of R$105 million in São Paulo". CBSI.
  25. ^ "Mercado Libre doubles its software center in Córdoba". La Voz. March 23, 2016.
  26. ^ "Mercado Libre invested $10 million in headquarters". La Republica. October 20, 2016.
  27. ^ "Mercado Libre to invest $10 billion in Colombia". Dinero. October 27, 2016.
  28. ^ "MercadoLibre abre tres nuevos centros de distribución en América Latina - Reuters". lta.reuters.com. Archived from the original on June 7, 2019. Retrieved July 13, 2020.
  29. ^ PE, FashionNetwork com. "Mercado Libre invertirá 100 millones de dólares en Chile". FashionNetwork.com (in Spanish). Retrieved July 13, 2020.
  30. ^ "Mercado Libre se expande, pero fuera de Argentina: abre un nuevo centro logístico en Colombia". iproup.com (in Spanish). Retrieved July 13, 2020.
  31. ^ "Mercado Libre to bring 200 new jobs to Bogota in 2020". Reuters. June 10, 2020. Retrieved July 13, 2020.
  32. ^ "MercadoLibre to Invest Record $1.8 Billion in Brazil". finance.yahoo.com. Archived from the original on March 9, 2021.
  33. ^ "Free Market Opens 'Stores' For SMES". Expansion. July 11, 2012.
  34. ^ "Mercado Libre advances to be (also) a bank: Market Credit already offers up to $30,000". Info Negocios. December 16, 2013.
  35. ^ Javier Drovetto (May 2, 2016). "E-commerce:fashion, big star of consumption in the country". La Nacion.
  36. ^ a b "Mercado Libre Reported One Of The Best Years Of Its History". Latin Spots.
  37. ^ "Mercad Libre bets on the recovery of the real estate business". El Cronista. August 11, 2016.
  38. ^ a b "MercadoPago introduced its card reader to charge from a mobile device". La Nacion. October 2, 2014.
  39. ^ Julio Sanchez Onofre (July 11, 2012). "Mercado Libre bets SMEs with MercadoShops". El Economista.
  40. ^ Ana Clara (October 24, 2016). "Que el cliente entre al sistema por donde quiera, la batalla es con el efectivo". El Cronista.
  41. ^ "Mercado Pago is now available for trade in Colombia". El Tiempo. July 16, 2016.
  42. ^ "MercadoLibre avanza a ser (también) un banco: Mercado Crédito ya ofrece hasta $ 30.000" [MercadoLibre moves forwards to (also) being a bank: Mercado Crédito already offers up to $ 30.000 (Argentine pesos)]. inneuquen.info. Retrieved September 18, 2023.

External links[edit]

  • Official website Edit this at Wikidata
  • Business data for Mercado Libre: