Coca Cola: Past, Present, Future

Topics: Olympic Games, Coca-Cola, Summer Olympic Games Pages: 6 (2067 words) Published: June 22, 2013
HISTORY OF COCA COLA

Coca-Cola’s history began in Atlanta, Georgia on May 8th , 1886 [1] when the curiosity of a local pharmacist, Dr. John S. Pemberton [1], drove him to create the most popular soft drink in the world today [2]. Dr. Pemberton developed a syrup originally as a patent medicine to heal headaches and drowsiness with the majority of the ingredients containing coca leaves (cocaine) and kola nut (caffeine) - hence the name Coca- Cola [1]. This was then mixed with carbonated water to create the now famous Coca Cola product. Coca-Cola proved to be a hit at its opening location in the local community, Jacob’s Pharmacy [1]. Shortly after the creation of the carbonated beverage, Dr. Pemberton died and he sold portions of his business to various parties, with the majority going to Atlanta businessman, Asa G. Candler [1]. Under Mr. Candler's leadership, the distribution of Coca-Cola expanded to soda fountains beyond Atlanta to other states in America. In 1888, Candler established The Coca-Cola Company and purchased exclusive rights to the formula [1] . The year 1919 was a significant year for Coca Cola because it was when they issued their first Initial Public Offering (IPO) at $40.00 a share [10]. In 1919, it was obvious that $40 was too expensive for a share as there was very little demand for the shares, most likely due to the high price; Coca Cola dropped their share price to $20.00 [10]. This strategic moved proved to be successful as numerous shares started to be purchased and the brand name of Coca Cola became internationally known. From selling nine drinks a day at Jacob’s Pharmacy to now selling over 19,400 beverages every second around the world [2], it is clear that Coca-Cola has positioned themselves to the point where people in the wilds of Africa are familiar with its carbonated taste. RECENT COMPANY PERFORMANCE

Over the past 5 years, Coca Cola has enjoyed an annual growth rate of 8.21% [5]. This year alone, the Company’s revenues increased 3% to $36.56B while net income increased 3% to $7.15B [27]. The Coca Cola market capitalization, the total dollar market value of all of a company's outstanding shares, is an impressive 168.82B [27]. From the initial IPO offering of $20.00, the stock price has risen 100% to just over $40 a share [10], which goes to show how far the company has come. It is clear that Coca Cola is a strong company that is only improving, and it does this creating a strong brand identity and ongoing innovation [3]. With such a strong presence in the soft drink industry, Coca Cola has been able to market and position them in such a way that has allowed them to become a familiar household name to the worldwide population. This has enabled Coca Cola to align themselves with a variety of national and international events of various kinds. It has expanded its product line to include over 3500 products such as energy drinks, juices, sport drinks, water, coffee, and tea, and has established their brand in more than 200 countries [24]. This makes the company a lot more diverse in their offerings which not only opens up more opportunity for increased sales, but also allows them to keep up with the changing demands of society along with their competitors. In this recent decade soft-drink companies have been under a lot of scrutiny on the effects the beverage has had on a person’s health. A large amount of attention has been targeted at Coke for their participation towards producing a product that leads to obesity [16]. The ingredients of Coca Cola have also sparked a lot of controversy on obesity due to the enormously high sugar and caffeine content and the fact is it the most acidic beverage on the market [15]. As the ingredients of carbonated beverages are becoming more important to the lives of consumer, Coca Cola recognizes that the innovation of new, healthier products is vital to the future success of the company. This innovation of healthier Coca Cola products and their current...
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