Four Coca-Cola Co bottlers will combine to create Coca-Cola East Japan

Four Coca-Cola Co bottlers will combine to create Coca-Cola East Japan

The Coca-Cola Co has said four of its Tokyo bottlers are to join forces, with the new company making up about half of its total volumes in Japan.

Coca-Cola East Japan is expected to start operations on 1 July pending shareholder approval, Coca-Cola Japan said on Friday (14 December). It will consist of the facilities and staff of Coca-Cola Central Japan, Mikuni Coca-Cola Bottling, Tokyo Coca-Cola Bottling and Tone Coca-Cola Bottling.

Coca-Cola Japan said the new company heralds “a new era of winning in the important Kanto region” and will be one of the top five global Coca-Cola bottlers by revenue.

It will represent about 47% of total annual Coca-Cola unit case volumes in Japan. Coca-Cola East Japan will have about 7,000 staff, ten manufacturing plants and 150 distribution warehouses, Coca-Cola Japan said.

Coca-Cola also announced the acquisition of a 22% stake in Mikuni Coca-Cola, which, combined with minority stakes in the other three companies, will give it a 33% share in Coca-Cola East Japan. Coca-Cola said the stake gives it the right to appoint the new venture's CEO and some board members.

Last year, Coca-Cola upped its stake in Coca-Cola Central Japan to 32.16% after buying shares from Mitsubishi Corp.