The Shareholders of Panamerican Beverages have approved the takeover bid by Mexico's Coca-Cola FEMSA, effectively giving the green light to create the world's second largest Coke bottler.

Stockholders of Panamco approved the merger in a special meeting that took place earlier today in Miami, Florida. The proposed transaction was approved by all classes of Panamco stock as required by the merger agreement between the two companies.

The merger still remains subject to the satisfaction or waiver of other conditions, including the disbursement of acquisition funding by lenders to Coca-Cola FEMSA. But assuming all other conditions are satisfied, the transaction is expected to close on May 6, 2003.

In December 2002, Coca-Cola FEMSA and Panamco announced a definitive agreement for Coca-Cola FEMSA to acquire Panamco in a transaction valued at US$3.6 billion. The combined company, which will continue to operate under the Coca-Cola FEMSA name, will be the leading bottler of Coca-Cola products in Latin America, and the world's second largest Coca-Cola bottler.