Coca-Cola Looks to Exit Bottling Activity in India

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Coca-Cola India has undertaken the process of diversifying its asset-heavy bottling partner Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages’ plants in line with its global strategy to refranchise bottling across markets. The beverage maker has already initiated talks with its existing independent franchise bottlers for the divestment.

Over the long term, the sell-off transactions are expected to materialise in phases to existing independent bottling partners individually.

The company-owned HCCB has established 18 plants and accounts for two-thirds of Coca-Cola’s volumes in the country. The makers have 13 independent franchise bottlers. A Coca-Cola spokesperson said the company does not comment on speculative news. “Our existing bottling system is working well and has provided us with substantial growth in the country,” the person added in his E-Nail revert.

Last month, Coca-Cola had announced that it has dropped plans to refranchise bottling in Africa and has opted to retain majority stake in the operations.

HCCB recently declared that its goal is to generate revenues of $2.5 billion by 2020, which involves manufacturing and selling a wider range of beverages by modifying its operating structure.

At that time, it said it had plans to add one million new outlets, up from two million outlets across 25 states, operating under seven zones instead of five at present.

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