BRUSSELS – American soft drinks company Coca-Cola acquired on Thursday British coffee chain Costa Coffee from Whitbread PLC after it received the green light from European Union competition regulators.
The acquisition, initially announced in August, is valued at around 3.9 billion pounds ($4.9 billion), and is the largest in Cola-Cola’s history.
“We see great opportunities for value creation through the combination of Costa’s capabilities and Coca-Cola’s marketing expertise and global reach,” said James Quincey, CEO of The Coca-Cola Company. “Our vision is to use the strong Costa platform to expand our portfolio in the growing coffee category.”
With this takeover, Coca-Cola was looking towards the coffee market, putting it in direct competition with Starbucks as sales of sugary drinks slow.