Coca Cola is the largest and most trusted beverage brand in the world. It employs approximately 130,600 people worldwide, and does over $40 billion in annual revenues. Founded in 1886, Coca Cola has gone through many products to become the leading maker, marketer and retailer of nonalcoholic beverages. You may know this company through its popular brand Coca-Cola and other ventures such as Fanta, Sprite, Minute Maid, Coke Zero and Dasani, but the Coca Cola Company goes beyond these brands.
This multi-national owns in excess of 500 brands and 3,500 products. These brands span from energy drinks to fizzy drinks to water. Of the 55 billion beverage servings drunk daily, 1.7 billion are manufactured and sold by Coca Cola and it would take you nine years to try them all at a rate of one product per day. Some of these brands are fully owned such as Fanta, Sprite, Coke Zero while others are under license such as Bacardi Mixers and Bacardi Premium Mixers.
Coca Cola has also gone through discontinued products for a myriad of reasons. Examples of discontinued products include Surge, Coke II, Leed – replaced by Sprite, Josta and Vista. In this list, we focus on the brands and products you never knew Coca Cola owned. Here are the 15 things you probably never knew Coca Cola owned.
Prior to 2013, Coca-Cola was in a joint venture with Nestlé to manufacture and distribute Nestea. At the end of 2012, the joint venture was phased out but Coca Cola continues to make the same ice tea product under the brand Fuze. Fuze Beverages produces ice teas and vitamin-infused, non-carbonated drinks such as Tea, Vitalize, Slenderize, Defensify and Refresh. Coca-cola purchased Fuze in 2007 for $250 million, making it one of Coke’s largest acquisitions of all time. Today, this division employs 120 people focusing on manufacturing over 40 products.
14. Bacardi Premium Mixers
Coca Cola uses Bacardi Mixers and Bacardi Premium Mixers under license from Bacardi Limited. These tropical drink mixers are available in Spain, United States and Australia. They are made from real fruit juices and purees for the best taste and experience. They come in a variety of flavors including strawberry, margarita rocks, margarita base lemon, margarita with triple sec, pina colada, and sweet and sour depending on the location.
Coke introduced Swerve, a flavored dairy drink fortified with vitamins A, C and D, to the market in 2003. It contained 51% skim milk and carried the recommended daily allowance of vitamins and calcium. Available in vanilla-banana, chocolate, and blueberry-strawberry flavors, the drink was initially intended for the alcopop market but it eventually found its way into school cafes. It had a yogurt taste with a distinct lager kick to it. Swerve failed to gain traction among kids and was taken off the market in 2006.
Edward Charles Edmond Barq and his brother founded Barq’s in 1890 in New Orleans. Initially, they bottled carbonated water and did not make root beer until 1897. Coca Cola acquired the brand in 1995 although it had been producing its own Ramblin’ Root Beer. Currently, it manufactures the Barq’s Root Beer, Diet Barq’s Root Beer – with no caffeine – Red Creme Soda, Diet Red Creme Soda, French Vanilla Creme Soda, and French Vanilla Diet Creme Soda.
Founded in 1980, Odwalla is a successful MinuteMaid – a Coca Cola Company – subsidiary that employs 900 people and pulls in $187 million in annual revenues. Coca Cola acquired the company in 2001 for $181 million, making it another one of its largest all time acquisitions. It specializes in making smoothies such as Mo’beta and Red Rhapsody, energy bars such as blueberry swirl and Choco-walla, 100% juices such as Carrot juice, quenchers and proteins such as Chai Vanilla and Vanilla Al’mondo Proteins.
Beverly is an Italian non-alcoholic aperitif. Coca Cola introduced it into the market in 1969 but suspended it 40 years later in 2009. In that time, Beverly competed successfully against other aperitifs such as San Pellegrino and Campari. Despite its withdrawal, this bitter drink can still be tried out at the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta. Beverly is much loved by people visiting the World of Coca Cola due to its bitter taste and the reaction people get from it.
9. Guaraná Jesus
Jesus Norberto Gomes formulated a fizzy drink made from the guarana plant extracts in 1920. At present, the drink is owned by Coca Cola and produced and bottled by Eduardo Lago on its behalf. It is said that the drink’s popularity in Sao Luis, Brazil has surpassed that of the Coca-Cola drink. Its popularity comes from its ingredients – caffeine, theophylline, and theobromine – that are known for stimulation. It has a sweet taste, bubblegum pink color and cinnamon aroma.
Chaywa is a coffee brand introduced in South Africa in 2008. The name means tea or coffee and is a derivative of ‘Chaqwa.’ The coffee is mainly sold at gas stations through vending machines. Coca Cola gets its freshly brewed coffee from Africa and South America and enriches it to create incredible aromas and deeper flavors. The brand comes in a variety of products including White Coffee, Black Coffee, Espresso, Caffe Latte, Chococcino, Cappuccino and Hot Chocolate.
The Coca Cola Company in Mexico initially introduced this sparkling energy drink in 2008. By 2009, the drink had been launched in Brazil, Ukraine, the Dominican Republic and Russia. It comes in fruit, red citrus and citrus punch flavors packaged in 0.25-litre cans and 0.5-litre PET bottles. Its reception in Mexico was up to par with lucha libre stars such as Dr. Wagner Jr., Místico, Último Guerrero and Perro Aguayo, Jr. endorsing it.
6. Disney’s Winnie the Pooh Roo Juice
Winnie the Pooh Roo Juice is a joint venture between Coca Cola and Disney in the UK. It was introduced in 2002 with a focus on parents with young children. Roo Juice only contains fruit juices, water and natural flavorings with no added sweeteners, colors, preservatives, sugar or artificial flavors, making it safe for young children. It comes in several flavors including winterberry, which contains blueberry, summer berry, which contains strawberry, and autumn apple, which contains grape juice.
Enviga is another Nestle-Coca Cola joint venture. The carbonated green-tea drink contains 5 calories per can, and Coca Cola once claimed that drinking three cans of this beverage could help you burn 60 to 100 calories primarily due to its high caffeine levels. This never sat well with the Center for Science in the Public Interest who sued the company in 2007 for marketing the product as a negative calorie drink. The courts ruled in favor of the accusers and Coca Cola was ordered to pay $650,000 as well as drop any weight loss assertions. The brand comes in Mixed Berry, Green Tea, and Tropical Pomegranate flavors.
4. Gold Peak Tea
Launched in 2006, Gold Peak Tea is a ready-to-drink iced tea. It won an award for the best taste as a result of being made from Kenyan Rift valley tea leaves. The product comes in both shelf stable and chilled forms and contains real sugar and no preservatives. Its flavors include Passion Fruit Mango White Tea, Lemonade Iced Tea, Unsweetened Iced Tea, Peach Iced Tea, Green Sweetened Iced Tea and Sweet Tea, all of which can be perfectly paired with foods such as burgers, salads, barbeques, sandwiches and fried foods.
It seems like Coca Cola has covered all niches in the drinks industry, including the coconut water industry. Zico is a Premium Coconut Water Company founded by Mark Rampolla in 2004. Coca Cola purchased a minority stake in the company in 2009 and completely acquiring it in 2013. Zico comes in a variety of flavors including Natural, which contains no gluten, dairy or lactose, Chocolate, which has half the sugar contained in other leading chocolate beverages, Latte, Mango, Pineapple, Passionfruit, and Tropical flavors.
In the 70s, the owner of Parle, Ramesh Chauhan, approached Duke’s Lemonade proprietors with the intention of acquiring their drink’s formula. They refused. Ramesh then created his own formula and launched his drink under the Limca brand. Fast forward to 1992 and the Indian Government allowed Coca Cola to reenter its market. Coca Cola approached Ramesh and bought his Limca brand alongside some of his other brands such as Maaza, Gold Spot and Citra. As such, Limca has become a widely successful lime and lemon soft drink in India.
Coca Cola extensively marketed Vault as a drink that tasted like soda but had a kick like an energy drink. Launched in 2005, the product was manufactured and sold in the United States until 2011 when it was withdrawn from the market. However, Vault wasn’t sold throughout the United States. It was only sold in 10 states. Vault had four variants: Vault Zero, which did not contain high fructose corn syrup, Vault Red Blitz, Peach Vault and Grape Vault. Vault was replaced with Mello Yello.
Sources coca-colacompany.com, businessinsider.com, theguardian.com
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