Coke to buy SABMiller’s stake in Coca-Cola Beverages Africa

Atlanta-based Coca-Cola Company said on Monday it would buy SABMiller’s stake in Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA), the newly formed South African-based bottling group with footprints in over a dozen African countries including Nigeria.

Coca-Cola which holds 11.3% stake in CCBA, with Coca-Cola SABCO and SABMiller each holding 31.7% and 57% ownership respectively said it would exercise its change-of control-clause (right-to-buy) to SABMiller’s stake which automatically would have gone to AB InBev, the acquirer of SABMiller after the merger deal closed.

Coke engineered the formation of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA) with SABMiller and South African-based Coca-Cola SABCO in 2014 as part the soft drink company’s worldwide consolidation effort initiated to reduce costs amid slowing sales of its soda drinks. However, Coke retained a change-of-ownership clause in the new group should one party decide to sell their stake.

The soft drink giant said it will negotiate terms of the deal with AB InBev in the coming months and at the same time look for new partners who will take ownership of SABMiller’s stake, the company said on Monday.

Potential buyers include Coca-Cola HBC, which is the Coke bottler in Nigeria. Others include Coca-Cola European Partners, Coca-Cola Equatorial and Coca-Cola FEMSA.

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