In the first edition of my book, Globalization: Opportunities & Implications, among the many practical examples of globalization-thriving companies in underdeveloped countries, a couple of very successful Mexican cases were presented, Santa Clara (page 41) and Comex (page 33, only in Spanish edition).
As it is clearly stated in the book, given that most of the examples discussed are unlisted companies, their respective financials are unknown. So, an educated guess was made, a la Peter Lynch. Most fortunately, only a few months after Globalization: Opportunities & Implications was released there were a couple of well funded global corporations that coincided with the author’s initial take: Sherwin-Williams in Comex’s case, and Femsa (NYSE ticker symbol FMX), the Mexican beverages –largest Coca-Cola bottling company in the world, outside the US– and convenience store giant in Santa Clara’s.
On November 12, Sherwin-Williams offered US $2,340 million in cash, taking on Comex’s debt. The transaction is still conditioned
to the regulatory approval from the Mexican Antitrust Commission. A ruling is expected by the first weeks of 2013.
A few months earlier, on July 3, 2012, Femsa announced the acquisition of Santa Clara, the dairy products manufacturer and ice cream parlor leader in Mexico, for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition was made through Jugos del Valle, a Femsa wholly-owned subsidiary. This transaction does not include the 160 sale points currently operating on a franchise agreement base.
Regardless of the final outcome, a couple of world-class corporations have coincided with the appraisal made in Globalization: Opportunities & Implications. This proves something very consequential. Peter Lynch is right! However important financial statements and an adequate due-diligence process are, there is no substitute for logical, good judgement.
The corollary of this story must be that the examples presented in the book are solid, very valid testimonials of a thriving global economy, even in developing nations. The book presents plenty of very practical, solid and useful conclusions to learn from.