Cola Wars

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9-711-462 REV: MAY 26, 2011 DAVID B. YOFFIE RENEE KIM Cola Wars Conti inue: Coke an Peps in 201 C nd si 10 Fo more than a century, Co and Pepsi vied for “th or oke hroat share” o the world’s beverage m of s market. The most intense battles in the so-called col wars were fought over the $74 billio carbonated soft m b la e on drink (CSD) indus stry in the Un nited States.1 In a “carefu ully waged co ompetitive str ruggle” that l lasted from 1975 through the mid-199 both Cok and Pepsi a h 90s, ke achieved ave erage annual r revenue grow of wth nd oth w SD tion rose stead year afte year.2 Acco dily er ording aroun 10%, as bo U.S. and worldwide CS consumpt to Rog Enrico, fo ger ormer CEO of…show more content…
Yet Americans drank more soda than any other beverage. Within the CSD category, the cola segment maintained its dominance, although its market share dropped from 71% in 1990 to 55% in 2009.6 Non-cola CSDs included lemon/lime, citrus, pepper-type, orange, root beer, and other flavors. CSDs consisted of a flavor base (called “concentrate”), a sweetener, and carbonated water. The production and distribution of CSDs involved four major participants: concentrate producers, bottlers, retail channels, and suppliers.7 Concentrate Producers The concentrate producer blended raw material ingredients, packaged the mixture in plastic canisters, and shipped those containers to the bottler. To make concentrate for diet CSDs, concentrate makers often added artificial sweetener; with regular CSDs, bottlers added sugar or high-fructose corn syrup themselves. The concentrate manufacturing process involved relatively little capital investment in machinery, overhead, or labor. A typical concentrate manufacturing plant, which could cover a geographic area as large as the United States, cost between $50 million to $100 million to build.8 A concentrate producer’s most significant costs were for advertising, promotion, market research, and bottler support. Using innovative and sophisticated campaigns, they invested heavily in their trademarks over time. While concentrate producers implemented and financed marketing programs jointly with bottlers, they usually took

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