For a description of certain factors that may have had, or may in the future have, a significant impact on our business, financial condition or results of operations, see "Item 1A. Risk Factors."
ACCO Brands is a designer, marketer and manufacturer of recognized consumer and end-user demanded brands used in businesses, schools, and homes. Our widely known brands include AT-A-GLANCE®, Barrilito®, Derwent®, Esselte®, Five Star®, GBC®, Hilroy®, Kensington®, Leitz®, Marbig®, Mead®, NOBO®, Quartet®, Rapid®, Rexel®, Swingline®, Tilibra® and Wilson Jones®. More than 75% of our net sales come from brands that occupy the number-one or number-two positions in the select product categories in which we compete. We distribute our products through a wide variety of retail and commercial channels to ensure that our products are readily and conveniently available for purchase by consumers and other end-users, wherever they prefer to shop. These channels include mass retailers, e-tailers, discount, drug/grocery and variety chains; warehouse clubs; hardware and specialty stores; independent office product dealers; office superstores; wholesalers; and contract stationers. Our products are sold primarily in the U.S., Europe, Australia, Canada, Brazil and Mexico. For the year ended December 31, 2018, approximately 42% of our sales were in the U.S.; down from 45% in 2017. This decrease was primarily the result of the Esselte Acquisition and GOBA Acquisition, as defined below, which further extended our geographic reach. For further information on the acquisitions, see "Note 3. Acquisitions" to the consolidated financial statements contained in Part II, Item 8. of this report and "Part II. Item 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations."
The Company's strategy is to grow its global portfolio of consumer brands, increase its presence in faster growing geographies and channels and diversify its customer base. The Company continues to focus on leveraging its cost structure through synergies and productivity savings to drive long-term profit improvement and on strong free cash flow generation. We plan to supplement organic growth globally with strategic acquisitions in both existing and adjacent product categories.