Coca Cola Strategic Analysis

4993 words - 20 pages

Introduction

Coca-Cola is a carbonated soft drink sold in stores, restaurants, and vending machines in more than 200 countries. It is produced by The Coca-Cola Company of Atlanta, Georgia, and is often referred to simply as Coke (a registered trademark of The Coca-Cola Company in the United States since March 27, 1944). Originally intended as a patent medicine when it was invented in the late 19th century by John Pemberton, Coca-Cola was bought out by businessman Asa Griggs Candler, whose marketing tactics led Coke to its dominance of the world soft-drink market throughout the 20th century.

The company produces concentrate, which is then sold to licensed Coca-Cola bottlers throughout ...view middle of the document...

To this day, Coca-Cola is written the same way. In the first year, Pemberton sold just 9 glasses of Coca-Cola a day.  A century later, The Coca-Cola Company has produced more than 10 billion gallons of syrup. Unfortunately for Pemberton, he died in 1888 without realizing the success of the beverage he had created.  Over the course of three years, 1888-1891, Atlanta businessman Asa Griggs Candler secured rights to the business for a total of about $2,300. Candler would become the Company's first president, and the first to bring real vision to the business and the brand.


Beyond Atlanta :

Asa G. Candler, a natural born salesman, transformed Coca-Cola from an invention into a business. He knew there were thirsty people out there, and Candler found brilliant and innovative ways to introduce them to this exciting new refreshment. He gave away coupons for complimentary first tastes of Coca-Cola, and outfitted distributing pharmacists with clocks, urns, calendars and apothecary scales bearing the Coca-Cola brand. People saw Coca-Cola everywhere, and the aggressive promotion worked. By 1895, Candler had built syrup plants in Chicago, Dallas and Los Angeles.  
Inevitably, the soda's popularity led to a demand for it to be enjoyed in new ways. In 1894, a Mississippi businessman named Joseph Biedenharn became the first to put Coca-Cola in bottles. He sent 12 of them to Candler, who responded without enthusiasm. Despite being a brilliant and innovative businessman, he didn't realize then that the future of Coca-Cola would be with portable, bottled beverages customers could take anywhere. He still didn't realize it five years later, when, in 1899, two Chattanooga lawyers, Benjamin F. Thomas and Joseph B. Whitehead, secured exclusive rights from Candler to bottle and sell the beverage -- for the sum of only one dollar.  

Safeguarding the brand :
Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but The Coca-Cola Company was none too pleased about the proliferation of copycat beverages taking advantage of its success. This was a great product, and a great brand. Both needed to be protected. Advertising focused on the authenticity of Coca-Cola, urging consumers to "Demand the genuine" and "Accept no substitute”.
The Company also decided to create a distinctive bottle shape to assure people they were actually getting a real Coca-Cola. The Root Glass Company of Terre Haute, Indiana, won a contest to design a bottle that could be recognized in the dark. In 1916, they began manufacturing the famous contour bottle. The contour bottle, which remains the signature shape of Coca-Cola today, was chosen for its attractive appearance, original design and the fact that, even in the dark, you could identify the genuine article.  As the country roared into the new century, The Coca-Cola Company grew...

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