Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE), the world's largest bottler of Coca-Cola Co. products, is to axe around 3,500 jobs from its global workforce.

The company, which has operations in countries including the US, the UK and France, announced the cuts today (13 February) as it issued its full-year results for 2006.

CCE said it would restructure parts of its corporate, North American and European operations to "enhance standardisation and consistency in our operating structure and business practices".

The bottler said it would create a more efficient supply chain in North America and implement new selling systems with its customers.

The move is expected to cost CCE about US$300m in restructuring charges over the next two years.

Meanwhile, the company posted a net loss of US$1.1bn during 2006 after absorbing a US$2.9bn impairment charge. CCE said the charge was taken to reduce the book value of its North American franchise license intangibles to their estimated fair value.

Annual revenues rose 6% to US$19.8bn thanks to price increases and a 1% increase in volumes. Stripping out the impairment and other one-off charges in 2006, CCE said operating income rose 5% to US$1.5bn.