COCA-COLA BOTTLING COMPANY UNITED SIGNS LETTER OF INTENT WITH THE COCA-COLA COMPANY TO EXPAND TERRITORY
The Coca-Cola Company announces Letter of Intent with U.S. Bottling Partner
Implementation of 21st Century Beverage Partnership Model in the UNITED States Continues
Birmingham, Alabama, April, 22, 2015 – Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED announced today that it has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with The Coca-Cola Company for expanded territory rights. The bottler will assume territories in Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Mississippi. These territories are as follows: Alexandria, Louisiana; Monroe, Louisiana; Natchez, Mississippi; New Iberia, Louisiana; New Orleans, Louisiana; Shreveport, Louisiana; Tallahassee, Florida; and Valdosta, Georgia.
Expected transitions are subject to the parties reaching Definitive Agreements during 2015. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Since 1899, we have had the privilege of distributing exceptional brands, serving our customers, refreshing consumers and supporting our communities in the Southeast,” said Claude B. Nielsen, Chief Executive Officer of Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED. “Today’s announcement is evidence of our ongoing commitment to build, in partnership with The Coca-Cola Company, an even stronger and more aligned System to serve North America. UNITED has been granted great Coca-Cola franchises that will contribute positively to our scale and synergy. Due in large part to the collective and constructive effort of the entire Coca-Cola System, we increased our size substantially during 2014 and did so in a way that is very positive for the future. We met, on schedule, our key objectives for smooth employee, customer and community transitions. Through expansion, we were also fortunate to gain many talented associates for the UNITED family. We learned a great deal during the 2014 transitions and continue to learn and improve today. Given the magnitude of the transaction announced today, we will take nothing for granted, but our 2014 experience gives us confidence that we can successfully repeat our performance.”
“We have made significant progress toward the implementation of our 21st Century Beverage Partnership Model in the U.S., which continues to strengthen our franchise system,” said Sandy Douglas, President, North America. “Today we mark another significant milestone in evolving our U.S. operations as we align for growth with Coca-Cola UNITED – a partner that has proven success, taken a generational view and consistently invested in capabilities and leadership. Together we continue to transform our U.S. business and move closer to achieving our 2020 Vision.”
Consistent with prior transactions in the newly granted territories, Coca-Cola UNITED and The Coca-Cola Company will work collaboratively to implement key elements of the evolving 21st Century Beverage Partnership Model including:
- More rational and contiguous operating territories
- A grant of exclusive territory rights and the sale by Coca-Cola Refreshments (CCR) of distribution assets and cold drink equipment
- A finished goods model under which production assets will remain with CCR
- An improved, more integrated information technology platform
- A new beverage agreement that supports the evolving operating model
About Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED, Inc.:
Founded in 1902, Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED, Inc. is the third largest Coca-Cola bottling company in the UNITED States and is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. Coca-Cola UNITED currently operates 27 Sales Centers in the following franchise territories: ALABAMA: Birmingham, Cullman, Dothan, Evergreen, Montgomery, Oxford, Scottsboro, Tuscaloosa, Carbon Hill (“West Alabama”); GEORGIA: Augusta, Brunswick, Dalton, McRae, Milledgeville, Savannah, Statesboro, Waycross; West Point; FLORIDA: Pensacola, Valparaiso; LOUISIANA: Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles; MISSISSIPPI: Gulfport, Hattiesburg, McComb; SOUTH CAROLINA: Spartanburg; TENNESSEE: Chattanooga.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, one of the world’s most valuable and recognizable brands, our Company’s portfolio features 20 billion-dollar brands including, Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, POWERADE, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia, Dasani, FUZE TEA and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of 1.9 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world’s top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo, visit our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com or find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/the-coca-cola-company.