Strategy and Competitive Advantages

Competitive Advantages

Metalfrio’s competitive strengths include:

Leadership in Latin America.
With almost 50 years of experience in the market, Metalfrio is the leader in the plug-in commercial refrigeration industry in Brazil and Latin America, and one of the world’s three largest manufacturers of plug-in commercial refrigeration equipment.

According to a survey by Oxygen Trade Metalfrio products are currently used by approximately 90% of retailers and other businesses that employ plug-in commercial refrigeration in Brazil and the company’s floor share, as measured by installed units in Brazil, was 38.4% in 2007.

The Company has a strong and well-known brand and a wide portfolio of loyal customers in Latin America as a result of the quality, durability and competitiveness of its products and the “life cycle” program, which is the post-sales maintenance and technical assistance program created in 2005.

Global operations, flexibility and economies of scale.
Metalfrio believes that its understanding of the global refrigeration sector and of its customers’ target markets, together with the strategic location of its production facilities and flexibility in developing customized designs that meet customers’ marketing strategies, set Metalfrio apart from its competitors in meeting the needs of its customers, following Metalfrio’s principle of “local supply to global customers.”

Metalfrio’s expansion into new countries is driven by strategic opportunities and by the demand of its largest multinational customers for local service provided by multinational suppliers.

Metalfrio’s strong relationships with these customers often create opportunities for the Company to expand its global operations to countries where they operate. The ranking of Brazilian multinational companies published in 2009 by Fundação Dom Cabral ranks Metalfrio as the fifth most international Brazilian company, based on certain ratios that take into account the amount of revenues, assets and employees of foreign subsidiaries.

Additionally, due to the size of its operations, the centralization of its administrative planning in Metalfrio’s head office in Brazil and the global relationships that it has built with its main suppliers, the Company believes that it will continue to benefit from economies of scale that may lead to greater operational efficiency and reductions in its costs of administration, equipment parts and raw materials.

Technological development and high quality of products and services.
Metalfrio believes that its reputation is largely based on its technological innovation and on the quality of its products and services. Metalfrio’s products comprise a strong portfolio well-known in the market. The Company have been granted quality certification in Brazil and abroad by various well-regarded independent groups, such as the International Standardization Organization, or ISO, the International Electric Code, or IEC, Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or UL, the Association for Standardization and Certification (Asociación de Normalización y Certificación), or ANCE, the National Sanitary Foundation, or NSF, the Brazilian Association of Technical Standards (Associação Brasileira de Normas Técnicas), or ABNT, and the Argentine Institute for Standardization (Instituto Argentino de Normalización), or IRAM. Moreover, the Company seeks to integrate innovative technologies into its products. Some of the innovative technologies used in their products include:

  1. super cooler units for beer, with electronical temperature controls that react to the external temperature and the number of bottles being stored;
  2. pioneering use of CO2 as a substitute for chloro-fluoro-carbons, or CFCs, in refrigerators in Brazil and the United States;
  3. our long-distance monitoring system (Smart Metalfrio); and
  4. Metalfrio’s new unit with a removable deck that allows for rapid substitution of the unit’s refrigeration system.

The quality and durability of its products, in addition to their advanced design features, make Metalfrio products important marketing tools for customers. The high level of technological development of its products also creates the potential for its customers to take advantage of energy savings, experience fewer instances of technical failures and benefit from more security for their products.

Competitive production costs and strategic location.
Metalfrio production facilities are strategically located in regions with: (i) growth potential, both internally and through exports, such as Brazil, Russia, Turkey and Mexico; (ii) competitive costs of labor, equipment parts and raw materials; and (iii) reliable suppliers.

In addition, most of its facilities benefit from efficiency gains and access to distribution networks from their proximity to its main customers in Latin America and Europe. Some of its production units benefit from reduced tariff barriers for exports and tax incentives. The Company’s productive capacity in various markets also reduces its exposure to possible instability, seasonality and downturns in any single market. In addition, it allows Metalfrio to benefit from the exchange of expertise and technical skills of its employees worldwide in the development of products adapted to different environmental and climatic conditions.

Strategic position to benefit from fast growing sectors.
Metalfrio’s leadership in Latin America, its operations in multiple markets, the high quality of its products and post-sale technical assistance and its strategically-located production network allows the Company to benefit from the growth in demand for beer, soft drinks, ice cream and refrigerated goods in general. In addition to its presence in developed markets, such as Western Europe and the United States, Metalfrio also have a solid reputation and active operations in markets with high potential for growth in the consumption of these goods, such as Brazil, Turkey, Mexico and Eastern Europe.

Management with a recognized history of growth and creation of value.
Since Metalfrio were acquired by its current principal shareholders in 2004, its managers have fostered a culture of creating value with a focus on: (i) increasing profitability, in part by implementing an incentive plan for employees; (ii) reducing costs, increasing efficiency of the value chain and innovating products; (iii) rapid growth and internationalization of its operations; and (iv) adherence to best practices in corporate governance, including the requirements of the Novo Mercado segment of the BM&FBOVESPA.

Top

Strategy

Metalfrio seeks to implement the following strategies:

Focus on the concept of refrigerators as retail points.
The Company intends to continue to design and position its products as marketing tools for its customers. In the markets in which Metalfrio operates, the temperature of its customers’ merchandise is a key factor affecting their sales performance, not only with respect to the conservation of products, but also in terms of stimulating consumer purchases. Moreover, the advertising space available on its commercial refrigerators plays a significant role in attracting the attention of consumers, representing both a means for its customers to distinguish their goods from competitors’ and a tool to increase their sales through consumers’ impulse purchases. Metalfrio’s business model allows for the large-scale production of plug-in commercial refrigerators, while providing its customers with the ability to customize units according to their specifications. The Company intends to continue to focus on the development of differentiated products to meet the particular needs of its customers’ marketing strategies, for example by expanding its sales of refrigerators with a feature we refer to as the “bridal veil” effect (a technology that causes a thin layer of frost to form on glass bottles stored in these refrigerators, making the bottle appear to be very cold) in national and international markets.

Increase its global presence, particularly in Asia and North America, through organic growth and acquisitions, actively participating in sector consolidation.
Metalfrio will continue to increase its global presence by offering high-quality products, deepening its relationship with its existing customers and fostering the loyalty of its customers through its “life cycle” program of post-sale technical assistance, particularly in markets with high growth potential. Particularly, the Company intends to expand and consolidate its position in the North American market through its distribution unit in Texas, United States, in addition to strengthening its position in developed markets in Western Europe and the Middle East through its production facilities in Russia and Turkey. Its international expansion will enable Metalfrio to meet more of the global demand that its principal customers have for its products. Metalfrio also continue to closely monitor its industry in search of opportunities for the strategic acquisitions of competitors, mainly in Asia, where the refrigeration industry is still in the process of consolidation.

Take advantage of economies of scale generated by its expansion.
Metalfrio believes that its expansion has created a promising opportunity for vertical integration in certain aspects of its production lines, and generated valuable opportunities for achieving economies of scale and cost reduction. Its increased production level has improved its bargaining power when purchasing equipment parts and raw materials from global suppliers, reducing its costs. Company’s expansion allowed Metalfrio to optimize its production by re-distributing it among its industrial facilities. Metalfrio intends to maximize the potential economies of scale arising from its expansion, and to centralize its business planning, organizational systems and administrative capacity in Brazil.

Expand direct sales to new markets.
Most of Metalfrio’s sales to global customers in Latin America are carried out through direct sales, allowing the Company to capture higher margins, compared to sales made through third party distributors, and to develop closer relationships with its customers. The businesses that Metalfrio acquired in Europe and Mexico mainly use indirect sales channels through distributors and sales agents. While the Company plan to maintain the existing network for the European and Mexican markets, in 2007 Metalfrio started to use the direct sales and marketing approach that the Company developed in Latin America to increase direct sales to customers in new markets. Metalfrio also intend to increase its direct sales in these new markets to global customers that operate there and that the Company currently serve through direct sales from Brazil.