Coca-Cola Polar is looking to acquire the Paraguayan soft drinks company Paraguay Refrescos (Paresa). The Chilean Coke bottler and distributor said over the weekend that it has signed a letter of intent with Paresa for the purchase of 92.25% of the Paraguayan company.

No financial details were available.

The acquisition is expected to take one year as Paresa is scheduled for due diligence.

Paresa, which started operations in Paraguay in 1964 as an authorised producer and bottler of Coke, has over 400 employees. In October 2000, Coca-Cola Interamerican Corporation acquired 95% in Paresa for around US$105 m. In 2003 the company posted a turnover of US$40m.

For the first half of this year, Coca-Cola Polar posted a 9% year-on-year rise in net profit, reaching US$60.9m.