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References to the term ‘big data’ in beverage companies’ filings were on the rise in the final quarter of last year, according to recently-released data.

As well as a marked increase on the corresponding three months in 2020, the term also appeared in 15% more sentences in filings between the third and fourth quarters of 2021. In total, the frequency of sentences relating to ‘big data’ during 2021 was 213% higher than in 2016 when GlobalData first began to track the key issues referred to in company filings.

Of the 20 biggest employers in beverages, Tingyi referred to big data the most last year. GlobalData identified 11 big data-related sentences in the group's filings, representing 0.3% of all sentences. Coca-Cola HBC mentioned big data the second most, in 0.3% of sentences in its filings. Other top employers with high big data mentions included Diageo, Pernod Ricard and PepsiCo.

GlobalData also categorises big data mentions by a series of subthemes. Of these, the most commonly referred-to topic in the fourth quarter of 2021 was 'data analytics', which made up 94% of all big data subtheme mentions by drinks companies.

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By GlobalData

When beverage companies publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies references to disruptive forces facing businesses in the coming years. Big data counts as one of these topics - companies that are investing in these areas are expected to be better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.

To assess whether big data is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of drinks brand owners, BlobalData looked at the percentage of companies that have mentioned the term at least once in filings during the past 12 months - this was 54% compared to 24% in 2016. Secondly, the company calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to big data.

This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on big data and how important the issue is considered within beverages. However, a company mentioning the term more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company's ventures in big data have been successes or failures.

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