Atlanta, Georgia – U.S.-based based Coca Cola Company has settled on the purchase of a 54.5% stake in Coca-Cola Beverages Africa, the soft-drink company’s largest African bottling business, from Anheuser-Busch InBev SA for $3.15 billion.
Coca Cola said that it planned to exercise a change-of-control clause for the business, which it plans to refranchise to another bottling partner, after AB InBev got control of the stake when it bought SABMiller PLC.
Investment and business analysts say the Atlanta-based company wants to keep AB InBev at arm’s length following speculation that it could become a future takeover target for the beer giant.
Per sources, AB InBev is considered as one of the major bottler of nonalcoholic drinks in Latin America for PepsiCo Inc., Coke’s longtime rival.
The Coca Cola’s deal represents its latest asset sale since its $100 billion-plus takeover of rival SABMiller, for which it won regulatory approval a few months ago, since.
Coca-Cola Beverages Africa is based in South Africa and has operations, including more than 30 bottling plants, in 10 countries across southern and eastern Africa.