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Letter to Morgan Stanley about Coke and CCE on the way ...

In a recent interview (See: http://www.ajc.com/news/content/business/coke/0905/09bizcce.html), Bill Pecoriello of Morgan Stanley made some comments about Coke and Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE). Specifically:

"Pressure is clearly mounting on Coke North America and CCE management."

CCE, the largest bottler of Coca-Cola products, is led by President and Chief Executive John Alm. The troubles also affect Coca-Cola North America, led by Don Knauss.

CCE provided an update on its performance in conjunction with an appearance at a conference in Boston. The company said it expects sales volume to decline 3 percent to 4 percent in Europe in the third quarter. In North America, volume should grow 1 percent to 2 percent.

CCE expects third-quarter earnings per share to fall below Wall Street estimates of 51 cents. For the full year, CCE anticipates earnings per share in the low- to mid-$1.30s, down from previous guidance.

Later in the referenced article, Mr. Pecoriello states:

In North America, he had projected volume growth of 4 percent. "The U.S. is clearly a disappointment, given the launch of Coke Zero and Diet Coke with Splenda, along with Coke's heavy use of coupons" to boost sales during the Fourth of July holiday, Pecoriello said.

Just for the record, Mr. Pecoriello is a spokesman for Morgan Stanley, and many of you see their commercials on TV all the time. It appears that Mr. Pecoriello and his company were surprised by the poor showing of Coke and CCE in what they call North America. Of course we are not, we know that our boycott Coke effort has gathered enough steam to be a factor in "disappointing results."

We have never stated we would run these multi-billion dollar multi-national corporations out of business, but we have said that until they make restitution for their desecration of Southern Heritage, retract their insults of calling us "disorganized rednecks" and get out of politics we would continue to distribute the Truth about their actions and quit buying their products. Well even a freshman just finishing Marketing 101 has learned something that the Coke management [sic] teams seems to have overlooked:

Current customers buy more products than former customers.

Of course Coke sales in what they call North America are down! We live in what they call North America! When thousands, many of whom were their most loyal customers quit buying Coke products, it affects sales. Duh! No after three years this now deserves a double Duh! So here is our analysis of the Coke (and CCE) management [sic] team:

Duh! Duh!

In a few more months they may advance to a triple Duh! They think we are just unorganized rednecks (in their own words) - to us they seem kinda "stupid."

Anyway back to Mr. Pecoriello. We must wonder if Mr. Pecoriello takes our effort into consideration when he looks at Coke & CCE performance? Perhaps he is not aware of it. Coke and CCE will not even acknowledge our letters to them, so it is doubtful that they fulfill their fiduciary duty and disclose that they are running off large numbers of their most loyal customers.

After a week of review, the letter below is being mailed on September 19. In a week or so - some of you that accounts with Morgan Stanley might want to see what they have to say about Coke and CCE. Afterall they work "one client at a time!"

We thank all who commented on the proposed letter.

In the meantime, continue to spread the word:

Email This page

AND continue to get more signatures on:

The Coca-Cola Company Should Get Out  of Politics Petition

 

Mike Crane
725 Ridgeview Road
Morganton, Georgia 30560
September 19, 2005

Mr. Bill Pecoriello
Morgan Stanley
1585 Broadway
New York, NY 10036

 Dear Mr. Pecoriello:

This letter is in reference to your recent comments in an article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, " CCE cuts sales, earnings projections; stock hammered" by Scott Leith. In reading your comments in the article some had the impression that you were surprised by the poor performance of Coke and CCE in their "North American" unit.

Lower than expected performance in "North America" has been a common theme in recent financial reports - despite announcements of "doubling" their advertising and release of new products. Many in the financial community have also publicly called their performance "disappointing."

As you are aware Coke for many years had a very loyal customer base that would drink nothing else by choice. But Coke has abandoned an increasing portion of this very loyal customer base by trying to force a politically correct agenda on an unwilling population. Specifically they have denigrated Southern Heritage, even the factual history of the inventor of Coke, participated in the secret deals to steal the Georgia Flag and were very insulting when we made a legitimate complaint. In fact they lied to us about their participation in the Georgia Business PAC, even though the campaign finance records are public record in Georgia. Then stated via their customer service representative that we were not worth listening to as we were just unorganized rednecks. Since then they have failed to even acknowledge receipt of written communications.

While this direct political involvement may not be of interest to you, perhaps the growing number of citizens who are making a decision to not purchase Coke products is of interest. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that current customers buy more products than former customers. Getting rid of loyal customers has never been a very successful marketing strategy.

We do not know nor make any specific claim as to what portion of the "disappointing performance" is the result of their management team's decision to use corporate funds to discredit Our Heritage. But we do make the statement that lost sales do not improve performance!

The unanswered communications with Coke and CCE and the online petition (the paper petitions are referenced in the communications) along with signatures and comments are available for your inspection at http://boycottcoke.org and http://spofga.org/corporations/anti_southern.phtml along with several other web sites. The http://boycottcoke.org is just under 60,000 visits and the section dealing with Coke on the http://spofga.org web site is just over 190,000.

We hope that you find this information of use in your effort to analyze and evaluate the performance of both Coke and Coca-Cola Enterprises.

Should you have any questions do not hesitate to contact our spokesman, Dr. William Swann.

Sincerely,

 

Mike Crane

cc: Mr. Scott Leith (Atlanta Journal)
    
Mr. E. "Neville" Isdell (CEO, Coca-Cola)
 

 


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