Coca-Cola is strengthening its Middle East presence

Coca-Cola is strengthening its Middle East presence

The Coca-Cola Co has formed two new companies with Aujan Group Holding, five months after it acquired half the UAE firm's business.

Rani Refreshments will hold the global rights to brands such as Rani and Barbican while Aujan Coca-Cola Beverages Co will manufacture and distribute the products, Coca-Cola said yesterday (24 February). Aujan Coca-Cola will also be the licensed manufacturer of Vimto in the Middle East, the company said.

In September, Coca-Cola paid US$980m for half of the soft drinks business of Aujan and 49% of its bottling and distribution operations.

“Today’s announcement puts the final seal on the largest-ever investment by a multinational firm in the Middle East’s fast moving consumer goods sector, and marks the next stage of development for our group and our brands,” the chairman of Aujan Group, Sheikh Adel Aujan, said.

The two companies will mirror the Coca-Cola bottling system, with Rani Refreshments supplying Aujan Coca-Cola with proprietary concentrate, Coca-Cola said. Aujan Coca-Cola will then produce, sell and distribute the product to markets across the Middle East and beyond.