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Coca-Cola moves away from soft drink focus with Aus investment
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Coca-Cola moves away from soft drink focus with Aus investment

Coca-Cola

Gilbert + Tobin has advised Coca-Cola Amatil on its joint acquisition alongside major shareholder, US-based The Coca-Cola Company of an equity stake in an independent Australian beverage manufacturer, Made Group.

Firm: Gilbert + Tobin (Coca-Cola Amatil)

Deal: Gilbert + Tobin has advised Coca-Cola Amatil on its joint acquisition of Made Group.

Value: Undisclosed

Area: M&A, corporate

Key players: Corporate advisory partner John Williamson-Noble led Gilbert + Tobin’s team. Partner Paula Gilardoni, lawyers Chris Morse and Andrew Low and consultant Jill Cooper all played a part.

Deal significance: The Made Group is an independent Australian beverage manufacturer known for its brands NutrientWater, Cocobella, Rokeby Farms and Impressed.

The joint acquisition by Coca-Cola Amatil (Amatil) and its major shareholder, US-based The Coca-Cola Company (TCCC) gives them a 45 percent equity stake in Made Group.

Gilbert + Tobin said the innovative ownership structure resulting from the deal means “Amatil and TCCC now have two board seats as part of their investment.”

However, “Amatil and TCCC intend that Made Group will continue to operate independently with the assistance of Amatil and TCCC to expand the Group’s product distribution and increase its market reach.”

The transaction “is in line with Amatil’s Accelerated Australian Growth Plan previously announced to the market, which aims to increase the company’s innovation and performance in emerging product categories and growth markets, while also exploring acquisitions that fit within its existing product portfolios.”

The firm also said the investment works well within Amatil’s goal “of transforming into a total beverage company, with a far broader range of products than just its core soft-drink brands.”

Mr Williamson-Noble expressed his pleasure at the deal’s successful outcome, as it will mutually benefit Coca-Cola Amatil, The Coca-Cola Company and Made Group.

He said the transaction “is another example of G+T’s expertise in advising clients in complex acquisitions with innovative ownership structures.”

“Our team is committed to working with clients to support their strategic long-term plans for growth,” he noted.

“The acquisition of a stake in Made Group is a great result for Coca-Cola Amatil, and we look forward to working with them as they continue to realise their vision for the business in the years to come,” Mr Williamson-Noble said.

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