FAQ

General FAQ

FEMSA is a leading company in Latin America. It controls Coca-Cola FEMSA, the largest franchise bottler of Coca-Cola products in the world, and Femsa Comercio, operating OXXO, the largest and fastest growing chain of small-format stores in Latin America with over 17,478 stores. In addition, these operations are supported by Strategic Business Processes and Information Technology, designed to drive the business units development through high quality products and services such as refrigeration, distribution and information solutions. FEMSA is also a significant investor in Heineken, one of the world’s leading brewers.

We have two main sub-holding companies:

  • Coca-Cola FEMSA: the largest public Coca-Cola franchise bottler of Coca-Cola products in the world
  • FEMSA Comercio (operating OXXO): the largest and fastest growing chain of small-format stores in Latin America

FEMSA and The Coca-Cola Company have been long-term strategic partners since Coca-Cola FEMSA was created in 1993.

FEMSA is the majority shareholder of Coca-Cola FEMSA, with 47.2% ownership of the outstanding capital stock and 63.0% of the voting rights. The Coca-Cola Company owns 27.8% of Coca-Cola FEMSA's outstanding capital stock and 37.0% of the voting interest. Public shareholders own the remaining 25.0% of the outstanding capital stock (with limited voting rights).

On April 30, 2010, FEMSA announced the closing of the transaction pursuant to which FEMSA agreed to exchange 100% of its beer operations for a 20% economic interest in the Heineken Group.

Additionally, on September 18, 2017, FEMSA completed an offering of shares in the Heineken Group reducing its economic interest to 14.76%.

On April 30, 2010, José Antonio Fernández Carbajal, our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, started to serve as a member of the Board of Directors of Heineken Holding, N.V. and the Supervisory Board of Heineken N.V. Javier Astaburuaga Sanjines, our Chief Financial Officer, also serves on the supervisory Board of Heineken N.V.

Under the Corporate Governance Agreement, FEMSA is entitled to nominate two representatives to the Heineken Supervisory Board, one of whom will be appointed as Vice Chairman of the board of Heineken N.V. and will also serve as a representative of FEMSA on the Heineken Holding N.V. Board of Directors. FEMSA's nominees for appointment to the Heineken Supervisory Board were José Antonio Fernández Carbajal, our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, and Javier Astaburuaga Sanjines, our Chief Financial Officer, who were both approved by Heineken N.V.'s general meeting of shareholders. Mr. José Antonio Fernández was also approved to the Heineken Holding N.V. Board of Directors by the general meeting of shareholders of Heineken Holding N.V.

In addition, the Heineken Supervisory Board has created an Americas committee to oversee the strategic direction of the business in the American continent and assess new business opportunities in that region. The Americas committee consists of two existing members of the Heineken Supervisory Board and one FEMSA representative, who acts as the chairman. The chairman of the Americas committee is José Antonio Fernández Carbajal, our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

All Corporate Governance rights were maintained after the completion of the offering of shares in Heineken Group, that FEMSA completed on September 18, 2017.

In Mexico, the small grocery store network is highly fragmented and presents economic opportunity for a well-managed store chain such as OXXO. For the last decade, the OXXO chain has enjoyed more than 17% annual compound growth in the number of OXXO stores, totaling over 17,478 in 2018.

Today the OXXO chain is one of the largest customers of Coca-Cola FEMSA.

As part of the Heineken transaction, OXXO stores will continue to benefit from the existing relationship under which FEMSA Cerveza (now part of Heineken) will continue to be the exclusive supplier of beer to OXXO until June 2020.

Corporate Governance

No. There is a voting trust, comprised mainly of five families, which owns approximately 36.4% of the economic capital of FEMSA.

Yes. Common shares are divided into two series: Series B shares have full voting rights, while Series D shares have limited voting rights. (See Shareholder Information section for more details).

Our Board of Directors is currently comprised of 17 directors and 15 alternate directors. Each member holds a one-year term and stands for election by the shareholders on an annual basis.

Yes. Our Directors are required to uphold the company's business code of ethics to ensure that our business is conducted in a consistently legal and ethical manner. 

FEMSA's Business Code of Ethics covers all areas of professional conduct and is applicable to all our employees, including our Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Accounting Officer and persons performing similar functions as well as to our directors and other officers and employees. All of our employees are required to sign a statement indicating their understanding of and adherence to these policies. This document covers our policies and procedures for business conduct, including employment policies, health and safety, conflicts of interest, intellectual property and the protection of confidential information, adherence to the laws and regulations applicable to the conduct of our business, and corporate citizenship. This will help us to conduct a proper management of our businesses.

No. Since fiscal year 2001, José Antonio Fernández has served as the Chairman and CEO of FEMSA. Combining these roles provides our company with the right balance to meet customer, employee, partner, shareholder, and community interests.

A minority shareholder requires at least 10% of the company's economic capital to elect a Director of the Board. Series D owners may elect five Directors.

Yes. In April 2002, the Mexican Securities and Banking Commission issued general rules regarding tender offers for the acquisition of shares of a Mexican listed company.

No. FEMSA's management compensation structure is not directly tied to the share price performance of the company; it is a stock incentive plan based on EVA. For details of our compensation structure, please see items 11 and 12 of our Annual Report on Form 20-F

Capital Stock

FEMSA was listed on the New York Stock Exchange on May 11, 1998. The company has 17,891,131,350 total underlying shares outstanding. These shares are divided into Series D-L Shares, Series D-B Shares, and Series B Shares that trade on the Mexican Stock Exchange in the form of BD Units and B Units and on the New York Stock Exchange in the form of American Depository Shares (ADS's).

To calculate FEMSA's market capitalization take the sum of the B and BD Units and divide that sum by 10 to get 357.82 million ADSs. Then, multiply this number by today's stock price to get the current market capitalization.

The table below illustrates the number of underlying shares in each series and the BD and B Units that these shares represent.

IR Shares

Each Series D-B and Series D-L Share is entitled to a dividend premium equal to 125% of the dividend distributed to each Series B Share.

Dividends generally are declared, if at all, during the first six months of the fiscal year, which ends on December 31. There is no guarantee that dividends will be declared and, if they are paid at all, they may be lower or higher than those paid in the past.

In accordance to Mexican law, income tax is not withheld from our dividend payments. Click here for our Dividend History

Each Series B Share entitles its holder to one vote at any of our ordinary or extraordinary general shareholders meetings. Our bylaws state that the board of directors must be composed of no more than 21 members. Holders of Series B Shares are entitled to elect at least 11 members of our board of directors. Holders of Series D Shares are entitled to elect five members of our board of directors. Our bylaws also contemplate that, should a conversion of the Series D-L Shares to Series L Shares occur pursuant to the vote of our Series D-B and Series D-L shareholders at special and extraordinary shareholders meetings, the holders of Series D-L shares (who would become holders of newly-issued Series L Shares) will be entitled to elect two members of the board of directors. None of our shares has cumulative voting rights, which is a right not regulated under Mexican law.

Under our bylaws, the holders of Series D Shares are entitled to vote at extraordinary shareholders meetings called to consider any of the following limited matters:

  1. the transformation from one form of corporate organization to another, other than from a company with variable capital stock to a company without variable capital stock or vice versa,
     
  2. any merger in which we are not the surviving entity or with other entities whose principal corporate purposes are different from those of our company or our subsidiaries,
     
  3. change of our jurisdiction of incorporation,
     
  4. dissolution and liquidation and
     
  5. the cancellation of the registration of the Series D Shares or Series L Shares in the Mexican Stock Exchange or in any other foreign stock market where listed, except in the case of the conversion of these shares as provided for in our bylaws.
     

Holders of Series D Shares are also entitled to vote on the matters that they are expressly authorized to vote on by the Mexican Securities Law and at any extraordinary shareholders meeting called to consider any of the following matters:

  1. To approve a conversion of all of the outstanding Series D-B Shares and Series D-L Shares into Series B shares with full voting rights and Series L Shares with limited voting rights, respectively.
     
  2. To agree to the unbundling of their share Units.
     

This conversion and/or unbundling of shares would become effective two (2) years after the date on which the shareholders agreed to such conversion and/or unbundling.

Under Mexican law, holders of shares of any series are entitled to vote as a class in a special meeting governed by the same rules that apply to extraordinary shareholders meetings on any action that would have an effect on the rights of holders of shares of such series. There are no procedures for determining whether a particular proposed shareholder action requires a class vote, and Mexican law does not provide extensive guidance on the criteria to be applied in making such a determination.

Yes. FEMSA and its subsidiaries have a stock incentive plan with a 3-year vesting period, for certain top executives based on Economic Value Added (EVA). The plan is administered by a trust that purchase FEMSA BD Units and/or options on FEMSA BD Units on the open market (or Coca-Cola FEMSA Series L Shares and/or options for Coca-Cola FEMSA’s officers). (See our 20-F form for more information).

In accordance to Mexican law, FEMSA's shareholders approved a maximum amount to be potentially used in share repurchases during the fiscal year 2003. The established amount was Ps. 3,000 millions. FEMSA, however, has not actively pursued a share buy back program since January 2001.

Direct Stock Purchase Plan

New Investors can make their initial purchase directly through The Bank of New York as Transfer Agent for FEMSA, and Administrator for the Global BuyDIRECT Plan.

You may choose to purchase additional ADS's of FEMSA by investing all or a portion of your cash dividends, or alternatively, you may choose to receive cash dividends directly.

Shares will be held in book-entry form. You will receive statements and confirmations reflecting your transaction history. You may, however, request the issuance of physical certificates at any time via a toll-free number, website, or by email.

ADS certificates of FEMSA that you currently hold in physical form may be deposited directly into your Plan account. The Bank of New York will credit these ADS's to your Plan account in book-entry form. You can withdraw or transfer all or a portion of your ADS's at any time.

All or a portion of your ADS's of FEMSA that are held through the Plan may be sold directly through the Plan without having to issue a certificate.