Drug Cartel Business Model

Drug Cartel
Drug Cartel

In 2012, for the fourth year in a row, Forbes named Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, leader of the Sinaloa drug cartel, to its “World’s Billionaires List.” Although this finding is highly controversial, especially when taking into account profits made in the deviant world, it symbolizes the huge profits that can accompany running a successful drug cartel. Despite billions spent by the United States and Mexico to fight the Mexican Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTOs), efforts have not quelled the multinational enterprises from continuing to succeed by supplying the black markets with products and services that return extremely high profit margins. For example, if the Sinaloa DTO has its hand in a kilo of cocaine from production all the way until it is sold in grams in a U.S. market, it will earn revenues upwards of $100,000 on a product for which it originally only paid about $2,000. The lucrative activity of drug trafficking produces revenues of $6.6 billion to $39 billion per year, a dollar amount that pushes cartels to streamline their strategies and business models so that they can play a part in earning some of these profits.

The Effective Business Practices of Mexican Drug Trafficking Organizations

School of Americas Manual

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