MANILA, Philippines–Mexico-based global bottling giant Coca-Cola FEMSA has signed a deal to acquire 51 percent of the local softdrink bottler Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc. (CCBPI) for $688.5 million in cash.
“This is Coca-Cola FEMSA’s first acquisition beyond Latin America and is seen as a vote of confidence in the strength of the Philippine economy, and the opportunities it provides,” Coca-Cola FEMSA said in a press statement on Friday.
Coca-Cola FEMSA, the largest franchise bottoler of Coca-Cola products in the world, bought the stake from beverage giant The Coca-Cola Co. (TCCC) of Atlanta.
The all-cash transaction is expected to close in early 2013. The deal gave the Philippine bottler an enterprise valuation of $1.35 billion for a 100 percent stake. Under the deal, Coca-Cola FEMSA has the option to buy remaining 49 percent of CCBPI within a seven-year period following the closing. The buyer has the “put option” to sell its ownership to The Coca-Cola Co. of Atlanta at any time during the sixth year.
CCBPI has 23 production plants and serves close to 800,000 customers. It is expected to sell about 530 million unit cases of beverages in 2012, FEMSA said.
With this transaction, Coca-Cola FEMSA seeks to leverage its “strong culture of social development, its proven know-how and operating capabilities” in the Philippines’ fast growing non-alcoholic beverage industry and its complex retail landscape.
Coca-Cola FEMSA will be in charge of the day-to-day operations of CCBPI and, together with The Coca-Cola Company, expects to enhance the bottling operations and contribute to growth in the Philippine market.
“We see profitable growth prospects and long-term returns in emerging market economies. We welcome the unique opportunity to learn and share new capabilities to grow as an integrated company, as professionals, and as men and women together with our communities. Our principles and values share a common ground with the Filipino community and we are sure that together we can extend FEMSA’s long lasting commitment to the continuous creation of economic, social and environmental value in every community where we operate,” said José Antonio Fernández Carbajal, Coca-Cola FEMSA chair.
“This announcement reflects our long-standing belief in the global franchise system and our continued commitment to innovation and growth in the Philippines, just as we have done over the last 100 years,” said Muhtar Kent, chairman and chief executive officer of TCCC. “Our brands and our business have very deep roots in the Philippines, and we look forward to working with our strong partners at Coca-Cola FEMSA to capture future opportunities for growth and investment and bring even more social and economic value to customers and communities throughout the country.”
Coca-Cola has been present in the Philippines since the start of the 20th century and has been locally produced since 1912. The Philippines received the first Coca-Cola bottling and distribution franchise in Asia. TCCC, the world’s largest beverage marker, regained control of CCBPI from San Miguel Corp. in 2007.
“The market in Philippines represents the expansion of our global footprint beyond Latin America, reinforcing our exposure to fast growing economies. It provides a unique opportunity to operate in a country with healthy growth prospects, dynamic internal consumption and an attractive socio-economic and demographic profile. We are happy to welcome a team of solid professionals and eager to commonly share our enthusiasm around the growth of this operation” said Carlos Salazar Lomelin, chief executive officer of Coca-Cola FEMSA.
Coca-Cola FEMSA produces and distributes Coca-Cola, Fanta, Sprite, Del Valle, and other trademark beverages of The Coca-Cola Company in Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina and the Philippines. It also distributes bottled water, juices, teas, isotonics, beer, and other beverages in some of these territories. The company has 60 bottling facilities and serves more than 2,500,000 retailers with more than 100,000 employees worldwide.