New facility enhances service to customers in Oskaloosa and Walton Counties
Mayor proclaims September 21 as “Coca-Cola Day”
Zero to $5mm in three minutes …
Valparaiso, FL (Sept. 21) – Today, Valparaiso Coca-Cola, a sales center of Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED (“UNITED”), dedicated its new $5 million sales and distribution center located at 647 Valparaiso Parkway in Valparaiso, FL. The 24,000 square foot facility, which includes a distribution center, warehouse, fleet maintenance center and administrative offices, will serve Okaloosa and Walton counties in Florida, as well as Florala in Alabama.
“When Valparaiso became a part of the UNITED family in 2014, we made a commitment to employ, serve, refresh and invest in the Emerald Coast area,” said John Sherman, President and CEO of Coca-Cola UNITED. “Today’s celebration and this beautiful new facility reinforces our commitment to our associates, our customers, our consumers and this community.”
Coca-Cola has been distributed throughout the area for more than a century; however, the first Valparaiso distribution facility was established in 1973. In 2014, Birmingham, AL-based Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED, the second largest privately held Coca-Cola bottler in North America and the third largest bottler of Coca-Cola products in the U.S., acquired the Valparaiso distribution territory.
Since that time, the Valparaiso facility has increased employment by more than 20 percent. There are now approximately 80 local associates working at the facility, with an annual payroll of approximately $4.4 million.
“Coca-Cola has been a big part of our community for decades,” said Mayor Heyward Strong of Valparaiso. “This new sales and distribution center demonstrates Coca-Cola UNITED’s growing commitment to our city, and that is very important to us. I further proclaim September 21, 2017, to be ‘Coca-Cola’ Day.’ ”
Niceville Mayor Randall Wise shares this sentiment. “Coca-Cola UNITED’s investment in our community encourages the citizens of Niceville, many of which work at this new sales center, to look for opportunities where they can develop and utilize their talents and skills, thereby improving their quality of life and that of their families,” said Wise.
This larger and more efficient distribution center will enable Valparaiso Coca-Cola to provide an even greater level of customer service to its more than 1,600 retail and on premise customers in Okaloosa and Walton counties in Florida and Florala, AL. The facility will deliver three million cases of non-alcoholic beverages annually to refresh over 267,000 consumers.
The 24,000 square-foot facility has a 17,000 square-foot warehouse, a 900 square-foot fleet maintenance area, and 6,000 square feet of administration space, as well as a service department for equipment and vending repair. Its fleet includes 19 tractor trailers, three route delivery trucks, and nine vans/pickups.
“Our new sales and distribution center provides a more efficient and pleasant working environment for our associates, along with better equipment and tools to more effectively serve our customers,” said Ed Hall, Valparaiso Sales Center Manager. “I am honored to lead this team of highly-motivated associates who are committed to our customers and our communities throughout the Emerald Coast.”
Following the official ribbon cutting outside the new facility, the attendees gathered inside the building for remarks by city officials from Valparaiso and Niceville, representatives from the local Chamber of Commerce, and executives from Coca-Cola UNITED. The Niceville High School band performed at the occasion, and a donation was made by Valparaiso Coca-Cola to the school’s band program, The Niceville Eagle Pride marching band, concert and jazz bands, auxiliaries and percussion ensemble is known as one of the most established school music programs across the southeast.
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About Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED, Inc.
Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED, Inc., founded in 1902 and headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, is the second largest privately held Coca-Cola bottler in North America and the third largest bottler of Coca-Cola products in the U.S. The Company is engaged in the production, sales and distribution of a diverse portfolio of leading sparkling (Coca-Cola®, diet Coke®, Coke Zero Sugar®, Dr Pepper®, Sprite® and Fanta®) and still (Smart Water®, Dasani®, PowerAde®, Gold Peak®, Monster® and Minute Maid®) non-alcoholic brands under exclusive franchise agreements principally with The Coca-Cola Company and the Dr Pepper® Company.
For more than 115 years, excellent customer service and strong community engagement built on local relationships have been the foundation of the company’s operating model. Since inception, Coca-Cola UNITED has remained true to its foundational core values of: Quality, Excellence, Integrity and Respect.
Beginning in 2014, UNITED embarked on a major expansion, acquiring additional production, sales and distribution territories in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. Among the franchises operated by United include Chattanooga, the world’s first Coca-Cola bottler, and Atlanta, headquarters of the worldwide Coca-Cola System. By the end of 2017, UNITED will have approximately 10,000 associates located in 52 territories across seven southeastern states.
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