Coca-Cola is reducing its bottler territory

Coca-Cola is reducing its bottler territory

The Coca-Cola Co has agreed to hand over bottler territory to Coca-Cola Bottling Co Consolidated (CCBCC) as part of a plan to expand its franchises' footprint.

CCBCC will assume responsibility for Tennessee territories Morristown and Johnson City from the end of the month, the two companies said yesterday (8 May). The territories are currently controlled by Coca-Cola subsidiary Coca-Cola Refreshments.

CCBCC also said it is continuing talks with Coca-Cola over other territories including Tennesses's Knoxville, Cleveland and Cookeville, Kentucky's  Louisville, Lexington, Paducah and Pikeville, KY and Indiana's Evansville.

“We believe that the refranchising of these territories of the Coca-Cola system will position us to deliver increased value for our customers, share owners and employees,” CCBCC chairman & CEO Frank Harrison said.

In April last year, Coca-Cola announced it had signed agreements with five US bottlers, giving them new, expanded territories. The move is part of an initiative by Coca-Cola to return to a franchise model in North America, as opposed to owning bottlers.