January 9, 2013 / 9:15 PM / in 5 years

UPDATE 1-Chile retailer Falabella to invest $3.923 bln 2013-2017

* Retailer seeks to expand presence in Latin America

* Falabella to finance investment via cash flow, debt

* Chilean retailers boosting presence in region

SANTIAGO, Jan 9 (Reuters) - Chilean retailer Falabella plans to invest $3.923 billion from 2013 to 2017 to boost its presence in Latin America, it said on Tuesday.

Falabella operates in Chile, Peru, Colombia and Argentina. It aims to open 231 new stores and 20 shopping malls by 2017.

“With the execution of this plan, at the end 2017 the company will have 527 stores and 51 shopping malls in the region,” the retailer said in a statement.

Falabella plans to spend $887 million this year, it added. The retailer had announced it would spend $3.5 billion through 2015 to build new stores and malls in Latin America.

Chilean retailers have been flexing their muscles across Latin America as domestic demand booms in much of the region.

Local retailer Cencosud’s shareholders in November approved a $1.5 billion capital increase destined for the purchase of French retailer Carrefour’s Colombian assets.

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