WASHINGTON -- Latin American retailers are generally optimistic about future sales growth, according to a recent survey of more than 175 retail companies in 17 Latin American countries.
conducted by the Food Marketing Institute here in cooperation with the Asociacion Latinoamericana de Supermercados, or ALAS, and the Asociacion Nacional de Tiendas de Autoservicio y Departamentales, or ANTAD, trade associations for the Latin American and Mexican retailers, respectively.
The study of store operations in Latin America, which FMI said was the first of its kind, was co-sponsored by Coca-Cola and its five Latin American divisions.
The study also found that the number of food stores in Latin America is growing at a rapid rate. Almost two-thirds of the companies responding to the survey added new stores in 1992, which increased the total number of stores in operation by 10%. Additionally, 63% of the companies said they were planning to open more new stores within a year.
Responses were received from 177 store groups operating a total of 2,275 stores, primarily supermarkets, hypermarkets and small markets or convenience stores.
Among the surveys other findings:
· Checkout scanners will become more prevalent in Latin American stores in the next two years. About 40% of the stores in the study currently have scanning and 75% of the stores without scanning expect to add this technology in the next two years.
· About 80% of the store groups in the survey are supplied from company-owned facilities. Many executives, about six in 10, said logistics is the most challenging operational issue, with major investments needed to improve roads and railroads.
· Almost two-thirds of the retailers surveyed said they believe personnel turnover will remain stable in the next year.
To order a copy of the report, "Supermarket Operations in Latin America 1993," call the FMI publications department at (202) 452-8444.