This excerpt taken from the KOF 20-F filed Jun 25, 2007.
Product Distribution Summary
We use two main sales methods depending on market and geographic conditions: (1) the traditional or conventional truck route system, in which the person in charge of the delivery makes immediate sales from inventory available on the truck and (2) the pre-sale system, which separates the sales and delivery functions and allows sales personnel to sell products prior to delivery and trucks to be loaded with the mix of products that retailers have previously ordered, thereby increasing distribution efficiency. As part of the pre-sale system, sales personnel also provide
merchandising services during retailer visits, which we believe enhance the presentation of our products at the point of sale. In certain areas, we also make sales through third party wholesalers of our products. The vast majority of our sales are on a cash basis.
We continually evaluate our distribution model in order to fit with the local dynamics of the market place. We are currently analyzing the way we go to market, recognizing different service needs from our customers, while looking for a more efficient distribution model. As part of this strategy, we are rolling out a variety of new distribution models throughout our territories looking for improvements in our distribution network.
We believe that service visits to retailers and frequency of deliveries are essential elements in an effective selling and distribution system for our products. Accordingly, we have continued to expand our pre-sale system throughout our operations in a selective way.
Our distribution centers range from large warehousing facilities and re-loading centers to small deposit centers. In addition to our fleet of trucks, we distribute our products in certain locations through a fleet of electric carts and hand-trucks in order to comply with local environmental and traffic regulations. We generally retain third parties to transport our finished products from the bottler plants to the distribution centers.
Mexico. We contract with a subsidiary of FEMSA for the transportation of finished products to our distribution centers from our Mexican production facilities. See Item 7. Major Shareholders and Related Party TransactionsRelated Party Transactions. From the distribution centers, we then distribute our finished products to retailers through our own fleet of trucks. During 2006, we closed 14 out of 106 distribution centers in our Mexican operations.
In Mexico, we sell a majority of our beverages at small retail stores to customers who take the beverages home or elsewhere for consumption. We also sell products through the on-premise segment, supermarkets and others. The on-premise segment consists of sales through sidewalk stands, restaurants, bars and various types of dispensing machines as well as sales through point-of-sale programs in concert halls, auditoriums and theaters.
Central America. In Central America, we distribute our finished products to retailers through a combination of our own fleet of trucks and third party distributors. At the end of 2006, we operated 28 distribution centers in our Central American territories. In our Central American operations, as in most of our territories, an important part of our total sales volume is through small retailers, and we have low supermarket penetration.
Colombia. We distribute our finished products to retailers through a combination of our own fleet of trucks and third party distributors. During 2006, we closed five distribution facilities in Colombia. In Colombia, where we have low supermarket penetration, an important part of our total sales volume is done through small retailers.
Venezuela. We distribute our finished products to retailers through a combination of our own fleet of trucks and third party distributors. Our Venezuelan operations distribute a significant part of total sales through small retailers and supermarkets, which in most of our operations have a less significant presence.
Argentina. As of December 31, 2006, we operated 5 distribution centers in Argentina. We distribute our finished products to retailers through a combination of our own fleet of trucks and third party distributors.
In 2006, we sold the majority of our products in the take-home segment, which consists of sales to consumers who take the beverages home or elsewhere for consumption. The percentage of total sales volume through supermarkets remained stable at 14.6% in 2006 from 14.3% in 2005.
Brazil. In Brazil, the delivery of our finished products to customers is by a third party. At the end of 2006, we operated 12 distribution facilities in our Brazilian territories. In contrast with the rest of our territories, which have low supermarket penetration, in Brazil we sold more than 20% of our total sales volume through supermarkets in 2006. In addition, in designated zones, third-party distributors purchase our products at a discount from the wholesale price and resell the products to retailers.