Coca-Cola to buy 10 per cent stake of GMCR for $1.25 billion

The Coca-Cola Company and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR) announced on 5 February that the soft-drink giant will purchase 10 per cent of GMCR. The companies signed a 10-year agreement to collaborate on the development and introduction of The Coca-Cola Company’s brands for use in GMCR Keurig Cold at-home beverage system.  The Coca-Cola Company will acquire newly issued shares in GMCR for approximately US$1.25 billion.  The companies announced that GMCR will be The Coca-Cola Company’s exclusive partner for the production and sale of The Coca-Cola Company-branded single-serve, pod-based cold beverages. The two companies said they also will explore other future opportunities to collaborate on the Keurig platform. “With The Coca-Cola Company as a global strategic partner in our multi-brand at-home Keurig Cold beverage system, we believe there is significant opportunity to premiumize and accelerate growth in the cold beverage category by empowering consumers with an innovative, convenient way to freshly prepare their favorite cold beverages at the push of a button,” said Brian P. Kelley, President and CEO of GMCR, in a statement. “This global relationship combines The Coca-Cola Company’s unparalleled brand, distribution and marketing strengths with GMCR’s innovative technology and beverage system expertise.” “Our 2020 Vision calls for decisive and timely action to continuously improve and evolve our global system to best serve our customers and consumers around the world,” said Muhtar Kent, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Coca-Cola Company, in a statement. “By pairing The Coca-Cola Company’s brand leadership and global footprint with GMCR’s innovative technology, we will be able to capitalize on the many exciting growth opportunities in the single-serve, pod-based segment of the cold beverage industry.” The investment is expected to close in March 2014. GMCR’s Keurig Cold single-serve beverage system is planned to be released in GMCR’s fiscal year 2015. Keurig Cold will use single-serve pods to dispense freshly-made cold beverages including carbonated drinks, enhanced waters, juice drinks, sports drinks and teas. The cold system is expected to be a similarly open-architecture platform like the Keurig hot system.

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