Coca-Cola would appear to be getting tough on those with free badged coolers. I've had a few calls from retailers who have had these coolers for up to 10 years and had previously found Coca-Cola Enterprises reps relatively 'cool' on what retailers stocked in their fridges, but no longer.
Narinder Bedi was one such to contact me. He has had a free cooler for about nine years and can no longer lay his hands on the contract. "We do stock other companies' products," he says, "and the previous rep was very flexible, but the new rep is adamant: follow the planogram or we'll take the fridge away." Narinder is waiting for a copy of the contract.
But I can tell him and anyone else that CCE has three cooler options: purchase, rental and zero rental. Purchase outright and you can stock what you like. If you rent, you pay a fixed quarterly amount and stock 80% of the cooler with CCE lines. The bottom 20% is your choice.
Zero rental means stocking "exclusively with CCE products unless there is no other chilled beverage capacity in the outlet from which consumers can help themselves". If you do have just the one cooler then you are free to put 20% of other brands in it. This was agreed as part of a deal brokered by the European Union in 2004.