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Coca Cola / south africa regional sales manager that represents namibia

1 Namibia, South Africa

My name is Caroline Makau, I am a small entrepeneur who supplies the retail stores in Namibia. My friend who used to work in Coca Cola introduced me to the SA regional manager as I was interested to get sole distributorship of Mazoe(Schweppes) in Namibia. My friend intimated that I will get support in terms of growing the product as it is produced in Zimbabwe and I import it to Namibia. I was told Coca-cola likes to work with women trying their luck in business. With that in mind as the sole distributorship was not coming as first and I was eager to proof that I can work I agreed to start buying hoping that the sole distributorship would be granted soon after. The bottler in Namibia had to be asked before they could grant it to my company House of Quality Rice. I provided all the information required and verbally I was told that the then bottler was not interested which made me work hard. But 3 years down the line the SA regional sales manager still calls me a trial and I have invested alot. No marketing assistance is offered as I am a trial. My husband wrote to say that now we are interested to go ahead with the sole distributorship which is what we wanted from the beginning for us to be outlined the requirements as we are tired working not knowing when big brother coca cola will flex they muscles and take it from us after we have grown it. We want to know who is responsible for what and how the business engagement is going to work. An attempt to ask for sole distributorship is faces with a cold response that we are a trial basis and we were not guaranteed that we would get it. Now am distributing Mazoe the whole of Namibia, I have done Marketing for a brand that is not mine and can be taken from me any time. How do you deal with this issues? Coca cola is such a big company, Zimbabwe where Mazoe originated there is a budget for marketing, I was asking for banting, Shelf strips and shelf talker. We are told there is no budget, even stock is send without barcodes and we are told there is no budget for barcodes. We are a cash customer monthly am spending close US$ 18, 000 (in africa that is not small change though it is for cocacola) to import the juice, the exchange rate US to SA rand is very erratic, There is no volume discount if I buy bulk in advance. New Mazoe is infiltrating Namibia from South Africa yet this is my territory, yet all I hear from my contact is that am a trial, with all this money am spending I cannot be just a trial want to know there way forward. Now it has been pegged on the African Bottler who is yet to be found. This is feel is a big company sucking dry a small company, I have dont my part only Coca - Cola is dragging their feel. This leaves me at limbo not too sure if all the investment is in vein. To penetrate a new market needs marketing, I have done that and now with infiltration from south Africa where there is no exchange rate issues, the new distributor will have cheaper products and will simply ride on my hard work. When I asked about the infiltration I was told am a trial and no guarantees. This very unfair and just in case the Mazoe has grown enough it will benefit this SA regional sales manager as it will be added to coca-cola range to be distributed by the bottler. All my effort with have been in vein. How different am I from the women you assist in you 5by20? Am trying to get redress for something that has disturbed me over the time period. I only have contact to Schweppes who I pay and they send the product, they tell me they are hopeless as its a coca cola product so am between a hard stone and a rock. Please give me a transparent way of becoming a distributor and what is expected of me?

My name again is Caroline Makau, My number is +[protected]
email is [protected]@iway.na

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