Its tasty, cool, and fizzy; its Coca Cola! The number one drink, Coca-Cola floods the world with its luscious taste. Coca-cola (Coke as it is popularly known) the giant multinational company has broken all the barriers of social, political and geographical boundaries to establish itself as market leader in nonalcoholic beverages. This captivating success of the Coca-Cola is achieved through its history, ingredients and its company s powerful profile.
The History of Coca-Cola dates back over a century in the city of Atlanta, Georgia. Fearing a ban on alcohol, due to the announced prohibition coming into force in Atlanta, John S. Pemberton changed his famous French Wine of coca. And so, on May 8th 1886, was born the most famous drink of all times, Coca-Cola. The initial success of Coca-Cola, due to the vigorous advertising campaign, goes to Frank Robinson, one of the founding parties of the company. It was Robinson who was responsible for the white spencerian handwriting on red background that would become the most famous trademark in the world. # His advertisements indicated that Coca-Cola was a Soda Fountain Drink, and not a medicine that was mixed with plain water. But Pemberton cheated Robinson out of his partnership. As revenge Robinson helped Asa Candler, a successful drugstore owner, to outright buy all the interests in Coca-Cola in 1888. Candler in turn removed cocaine from the drink around 1903. He also kept Frank Robinson in charge of the vigorous advertising, which in 1890 even exceeded the sales. In 1906 Frank was demoted as the head of advertising, but he kept working for the company until his retirement, in 1913. Candler s marketing strategy of giving away the bottling rights to Benjamin Franklin Thomas and Joseph Brown Whitehead paid off handsomely when in 1919 every major city in the United States had a Coca-Cola bottling plant. In 1917 Coca-Cola had to fight on many fronts to protect its product, trademark and contract with the bottlers. It managed to prove in the courts that it was not violating any Food and Drug Laws because the cocoa leaf used was actually decocanized. Having being elected the Mayor of Atlanta City and facing the problem of his dying wife, Candler willed his company to his children. In a twist of events, Sam Dobbs, the very nephew whom Candler had backed earlier against Frank Robinson, conspired to convince Candler s children to sell the company for $25 million to a corporate raider, Earnest Woodruff. In turn he got the presidency and one-third voting rights of the company. The saddest part of the story is that Asa Candler for whom the family meant so much was informed of the sale of his company not by his children but by the newspaper reports. From here onwards Coca-Cola is not owned by single man, but by a huge organization.
Only ten people knew Pemberton s original formula of six ingredients. It went through its first major change under Asa Candler. He added glycerin as a preservative, removed the cocaine, reduced caffeine, and replaced the citric acid with phosphoric acid. Since then only minor changes have taken place, namely corn syrup has replaced sugar as the sweetener. Only Asa Candler and Frank Robinson knew the changed formula and so as to cope with the growing volume of work and still keep the secret from spreading, the ingredients were numbered from one to nine. The numbering system was soon figured out and reported in several books. The number one ingredient is sugar. Number two is caramel. Number three is caffeine. Then the forth number is phosphoric acid. Going on to number five that is a coca leaf and cola nut extract. Numbers six is probably lime juice. Number seven is a flavoring mixture, while eight is vanilla and finally nine is glycerin (but is no longer used). These are the simple ingredients that are used to make the magical drink of Coca-Cola.
The Coca-Cola company is the largest manufacturer, distributor, and marketer of soft drinks and juice products accounting for nearly 1 billion servings sold per day and employing over 31 thousand employees in about two hundred countries all over the world. Besides the famous Coca-Cola and Coke patents, the company also manufactures or sells 230 other non-alcoholic beverages. These include Fanta (1960), Sprite (1961), Fresca (1966), PowerAde (1990), Nestea (1992), Fruitopia (1994), Barqs (1995), Minute Maid etc. The Companies operating management structure consists of five geographical groups; North America (which controls America and Canada), Latin America (from Mexico to the tip of Argentina), Greater Europe (consisting of Greenland to Russia s far East, as well as Western, Eastern and Central Europe), Africa and the Middle East (the Middle East and the whole of Africa), and Asia Pacific (including Asia spreading out to Australia). The Minute Maid Company, located in Houston, Texas is also a part of the Management group. For more than a century the company is discharging its social responsibilities through philanthropy and good citizenship. It continues to sponsor world events such as World Cup Soccer, National Football League, National Basketball Association, NASCAR, the Tour de France and the Olympic games (since 1928). This general profile of the company reflects the vast success of Coca-Cola and illustrates its achievements.
The history, ingredients and the company s profile all prove the enormous success of Coca-Cola. This multibillion worldwide company has more assets, wealth and profits than a few African companies combined. Coca-Cola has truly drowned the world in its miraculous taste, and will remain a splendid achievement to man for centuries to come.