The pandemic has fueled growth for many e-commerce operators, and MercadoLibre (MELI -3.23%) has been no exception. Sales on its marketplace grew to a record $6.6 billion, a 70% year-over-year gain in U.S. dollars or 110% when measured in local currency. On a Fool Live episode recorded on March 3, Fool contributors Brian Withers and Jason Hall discuss the incredible growth potential still ahead for this quality operator, giving investors one more reason to consider this stock for their portfolio.
Jason Hall: I want to make sure we close out in the next 3.5 minutes and leave our viewers with something to help them be a little smarter, happier, and richer. Brian Withers, what you got for us?
Brian Withers: I'm going to tag on to my excitement for MercadoLibre and one of the eMarketer just released the e-commerce growth from around the world for different regions. The Latin America region was the fastest-growing region in 2020 by a long shot at 36.7 percent year over year. They attributed a lot of that to the strict keeping coronavirus pandemic, stay-at-home orders that were put in place across the region. Brazil and Argentina were two of the fastest, I think Argentina was the No. 1 fastest-growing e-commerce country around the world.
The U.S. came in second, but it was about five points behind at 31.8 [percent]. The MercadoLibre CFO said that e-commerce for Latin America was still in the single digits of retail spend versus the U.S. ended the year at almost 16 percent, so still a long way to grow. Continued [to be] excited about e-commerce and the region and MercadoLibre's place in that.
Jason Hall: If you needed another reason to add MercadoLibre to your portfolio, there you are.