Coca-Cola - The national soft drink


The national soft drink


o     The history of Coca-Cola!

o     The possessors of Coca-Cola

John Pemberton - The inventor of Coca Cola

Asa Candler - The Coca-Cola King

Robert Woodruff & the new Santa Claus

Roberto Goizueta - The man who changed the formula

  • The Profile of Coca-Cola
  • The mission of the Coca-Cola Company
  • The secret ingredient
  • Trademark Origins
  • Environment
  • Atlanta 1996
  • Attachment

Coca-Cola is not only a refreshment, it's an image!

It is a product that evokes images of childhood, summer time, and feelings of Americana. Coca-Cola is in the same league as hot dogs, apple pie, and baseball.

Coca-Cola has promised us luck since Asa Candler, who acquired the Coca-Cola Company for US-$ 2300, has filled the first bottle. Today it is an enterprise of $ 150 billions. Coca-Cola is the most famous trademark in the world.

It sells feelings that are fundamental to everyone. Coca-Cola is like a religion, it sells feelings of equality (colour, appearances), companionship, friendship - and refreshment.

When people are together, then they are happy and drink Coca-Cola and when they drink Coca-Cola, then they are happy. Coca-Cola is a symbol for freedom.

The history of Coca-Cola:

There is a company which has got a secret. This secret is kept in a safe. Although everywhere in the world it is enjoyed, there have never been more than three persons who know the formula definitely. After the American Civil War America started with the reconstruction of the South and the people who were living in the South were looking for pain-killers and o they were an easy prey for wonder doctors.

One of those wonder doctors was John S Pemberton. He was addicted to morphine and was searching for an alternative. Pemberton was a genius who knew much about plants and concocted a mixture, similar a wine-bowle, made from the leaves of the coca-shrub and extracts from the kola nut. First John S. Pemberton introduced his Coca-Cola in Atlanta, Georgia in 1886. He brought it down to Jacob's Pharmacy, where consumers could enjoy a glass of Coca-Cola for five cents. In this year Coca -Cola sold nine drinks per day and its production started. By chance Pemberton got red barrels and so red became one colour of his product. Pemberton had a partner named Frank M. Robinson. It was Robinson who was responsible for the white flowing script in red background that would become the most famous trademark in the world. He also took over the responsibility for manufacture, promotion, and advertising of the new product.

In 1891 Asa Candler became the owner of the five-year-old Coca-Cola business. He acquired it for $ 2300. Within four years, his merchandising flair helped to expand consumption of Coca-Cola to every part of the nation. Two years later the trademark "Coca-Cola" was issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The candy merchant Joseph A. Biedenharn had the idea that people should be able to take their refreshment with them wherever they go, so he began offering bottled Coca-Cola. In 1899, large scale bottling was ushered in by two Chattanooga, Tennessee entrepreneurs, - for a dollar - bought the rights to bottle and sell Coca-Cola across the United States. That operation was the forerunner of the largest, most widespread production and distribution network in the world. In 1903 Asa Candler also had the cocaine removed from Coca-Cola when it became clear that cocaine is an addictive drug and not as harmless as earlier drug journals had indicated. In 1908 the Coca-Cola script had been spread across 2.5 million square feet of walls and 10,000 windows displayed Coca-Cola signs. Much of the success of Coca-cola can be directly attributed to Frank Robinson.

Three years later the U.S, government protested against Coca-Cola, they thought, that in a beverage for children should not be caffeine. Coca-Cola answered, that the drink was not for children. That was a big mistake, because mainly children drank it. So there was a law in the Coca-Cola Company that they were not allowed to show a child under the age of 12 in there advertising. Therefore the Coca-Cola Company searched for very young looking models.

Around 1915, many bottles used in the soft-drink industry were very similar, and Coca-Cola had many imitators which consumers were unable to identify until they took a sip. The answer was to create a distinct bottle for Coca-Cola, one that everyone would recognise, even if it was felt in the dark. As a result, the genuine Coca-Cola bottle with the contour shape now known around the world was developed by the Root Glass Company of Terre Haute, Indianan.

Four years later the Coca-Cola Company is sold for $ 25 million to the Atlanta banker Ernest Woodruff and a group of investors. In 1923 Robert W. Woodruff, the son of Ernest Woodruff became president of the Coca-Cola Company. He was responsible for the commercial success. Five years later Coca-Cola made its first Olympic appearance when 1000 cases of Coke accompanied the (.S. Olympic Team to Amsterdam. By the 1930´s Coca-Cola was taking advantage of new media. They advertised on radio, gave Coke away at movie sets, employed movie stars, and sports hero's and even Santa Claus.

Today only few people know that Coca-Cola created the Santa Claus how we know him toddy. In 1931 the artist Haddon Sundblan actually helped to create Santa Claus. Until this point Santa Claus had often been depicted wearing blue, yellow or green, and he was usually tall and gaunt and his name was St. Nikolaus. Haddon's illustrations always depicted Santa Claus as the fat, jolly man, dressed in Coca-Cola-red-

In 1936 the Coca-Cola Company celebrated its 50th anniversary. A three-day bottler convention, a motion picture chronicling the Company's early years, and even a special anniversary logo were part of the celebration.

"It's the real thing" was first used in Coke advertising in 1942.

Up until W.W.II Coca-Cola was offered world-wide, but was only popular to a real degree in Canada, Cuba and Germany. After the start of W.W.II Robert Woodruff insured that no matter where the soldiers were, they would always have Coca-Cola available to them. Coca-cola was already thought of as something American, and the military believed that Coca-Cola  would be an excellent means to boost morale .Coca-Cola bottling plants were built all over the world to help supply the soldiers, and by the time the war had ended there were 64 bottling plants that spanned across every continent except Antarctica.

In 1955 Fanta was launched in Naples, Italy. Today Fanta is the number one soft-drink in the world. In 1979 Coke introduces "Have a Coke and a Smile", a campaign of heart-warming emotion best captured by the television commercial.

Robert Goizueta introduced Diet Coke in 1980, the first soda produced by Coca-Cola that shared the flagship's name, and it was a huge success. Unfortunately Goizueta is not remembered for this huge success, but he is remembered for the biggest mistake in corporate history. Pepsi had been conducting the "Pepsi Challenge". First started in Dallas, Pepsi sponsored blind taste tests, and the majority preferred Pepsi to Coke. This taste tests went nation-wide, and with the same results. Worse yet, when Coke did their own test, they also found that the majority preferred Pepsi. So Coca-Cola decided to change the formula. Before this formula change could occur, the "Boss" still needed to be consulted. At his time Woodruff was 95 Years old and was dying. Woodruff agreed with Goizueta, that the public now preferred a sweeter drink, and the bite of Coca-Cola was now a drawback - he gave his permission to change the formula. A couple of months later, before the new Coca-Cola was released, the "Boss" died. The new Coca-Cola flopped, and on July 10th, they brought back the original Coke as Coca-Cola Classic and the New Coke disappeared. The threat of replacing the original formula with a new version turned out to be exactly what Coca-Cola needed to revitalise itself, but the marketing success can only be attributed to stupid luck and not ingenuity. In this year, 1985, also Cherry Coke was introduced.

In 1986 Coca-Cola, Georgia and the Statue of liberty celebrate of their 100th anniversary. In 1988 an independent world-wide survey confirmed that Coca-Cola was the best known, most admired trademark in the world.

In 1990 World of Coca-Cola, an attraction featuring a historical and futuristic look at Coca-Cola as well as a chance to sample the Coca-Cola Company products from around the world in Atlanta.

Seven years later World of Coca-Cola Las Vegas opened with a complete 100-feet-tall Coca-Cola contour bottle.

The Coca-Cola Company sponsored the Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, marking the 70th anniversary of the Company's Olympic partnership .New products Citra and Surge hit the market. And Douglas Ivester was named as the chairman of the Board of Directors and chief executive officer of the Coca-Cola Company. He is the 10th chairman of the board in the company's history in 1997. One year later, sales of Coca-Cola and other company products exceed 1 billion servings per day.

John Pemberton - The Inventor of Coca-Cola

John S. Pemberton was born in 1831 in the town of Knoxville, Georgia. He attended pharmacy school, and owned a drugstore in Columbus, Georgia. He fought for the confederacy during the Civil War, where he became addicted to morphine after being wounded. After the war Pemberton moved to Atlanta. He was addicted to morphine and so he was searching for an alternative. Pemberton knew much about plants and was very interested in the coca-shrub and the kola nut.

He extracted the cocaine from the leaves of the coca-shrub and the caffeine from the kola nut and made "French Wine of Coca". It was one of his biggest selling items. French Wine of Coca was a drink very similar in nature to Vin Mariani, a cocaine based Bordeaux wine that was immensely popular through out the world. At that time cocaine was not thought of harmful, and doctors such as Sigmund Freud even praised its virtues. Pemberton's formula also contained caffeine from the kola nut. Pemberton sold hid French Wine of Coca and a cure for nervous disorders and impotency. In 1886 he began experimenting and decided to remove the wine. The cocaine and caffeine tasted very bitter, so plenty of sugar was added to mask this flavour. Essential oils of various fruits flavours were also used to improve the taste. On May 8th, 1886 in a laboratory in his house at 107 Marietta Street, Atlanta, John S. Pemberton created the syrup that would later become Coca-Cola. But Coca-Cola neither made him rich, nor healed him. In the age of 57 he sold the formula, without knowing that others would become very rich with it.

Asa Candler - The Coca-Cola King

Asa Candler was born on December 10th, 1851. As a young man he decided not to go to college. In 1888 Asa Candler bought Coca-Cola for $2 300. He changed the formula several times to improve taste, improve shelf life and insure he had a unique product, because several people had known Pemperton's original formula. He removed cocaine totally from Coca-Cola, when it became clear that cocaine was an addictive drug. But the people, who drank it, didn't know that and so they thought that Coca-Cola is something mysterious, and that they do something against the law. Coca-Cola profited from their believing. He gave the name 7X to the formula.

In 1904 Coca-Cola became so successful that Asa Candler built a skyscraper, and fixed a photo of himself and a bottle of Coca-Cola into its foundation. In 1916 Asa was elected Mayor of Atlanta. By 1917, Coca-Cola was being attacked on several fonts. The federal Government reasoned that Coca-Cola had to be breaking the 1906 Pure Food & Drug Laws by either containing cocaine. Court testimony revealed that Coca-Cola was now flavoured with a decocanized coca leaf.

It is remarkable that when Asa Candler was approached in 1917, by two New York Lawyers representing a hidden syndicate, with an offer to purchase Coca-Cola for $ 25 million he turned them down. A couple of month after turning down the offer to sell Coca-Cola, on Christmas Day 1917, he decided to give the Coca Cola Company to his children. Asa Candler's oldest son Howard took full control over Coca-Cola, and his brothers and sisters took seats on the board. But in 1919 they sold the company to Ernest Woodruff. He was universally despised as a corporate raider, and it is also probable that Woodruff was responsible for the earlier 1917 offer (§ 25 million). Asa was not told about the sale of the company by even one of his children- he read about it in the paper- To a man that family meant everything to, this hurt him deeply. Asa Candler lived for another ten years.

Robert Woodruff & the "new" Santa Claus

Ernest Woodruff had a son named Robert, and it appears that he was somewhat of a disappointment to his father. Robert was a terrible student; he flunked out of high school, and ended up going to military school. His father then offered him a job within one of his companies, and since Robert was planning to get married he took the job. Robert was offered the presidency of the Coca-Cola Company.

By the 1920's people began driving cars and so Woodruff realised that gas stations should be equipped in order to attract people to buy Coca-Cola while tanking up their cars. By the 1930's they advertised on radio, gave Coke away at movie sets, employed sports heroes and even Santa Claus.

In 1936 Woodruff was invited to the Olympic Games in Berlin. He was the guest of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi-elite. Robert Woodruff saw clearly the politics of Hitler, but he was a pragmatist, and his politics were Coca-Cola.

He retired in 1955, but he continued to remain on the Finance Committee, and from there he ruled the company. He died in the 1980's but Woodruff was always the one with the power. Over the years Coke would see many new advertising campaigns and would introduce such new drinks as Sprite, TaB, Mello Yello, Mr. Pibb and Fresca.

Roberto Goizueta - He changed the formula

Roberto Goizueta (pronounced Goh-SWET-a), a native of Cuba, was appointed president of the Coca-Cola Company May 30th, 1980. Goizueta had started as a chemist with Coca-Cola, and in fact was one of the people who actually knew the formula.

Roberto Goizueta introduced Diet Coke in 1980. After the "Pepsi Challenge" the company decided to change the formula, because more people preferred Pepsi to Coca-Cola. But the New Coke became flopped and the company brought back the original Coke as Coca-Cola Classic.

On October 18th, 1997 Roberto Goizueta died at the age of 65 from complications arising from his fight with cancer.

Douglas Ivester, an exaccountant who has been with Coca-Cola for many years has been appointed the new President. Mr. Ivester has been described as a soft-spoken, intensely competitive and aggressive leader.

The profile of Coca-Cola

The Coca-Cola Company is the global soft-drink industry leader, with world headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia. The Company and its subsidiaries employ 30 000 people around the world. The Coca-Cola Company is represented in nearly 200 countries around the world. Approximately 70 percent of the Company volume and 80 percent of the Company profit com from outside the United States.

The Coca-Cola Company stock, with ticker symbol KO, is listed and traded on the New York Stock Exchange. Common stock is also traded on the Boston, Cincinnati, Chicago, Pacific and Philadelphia exchanges. Outside the United States, Company common stock is listed and traded on German and Swiss exchanges.

The Company's operating management structure consists of five geographic groups and The Minute Maid Company.

* The North American Group compromises the United States and Canada.

* The Latin America Group includes the Company's operations across Central and South America, Mexico to the tip of Argentina.

*The Middle and Far East Group, which is the Company's most populated operating group, ranges from the Middle East to India, China, Japan and Australia.

* The Greater Europe Group stretches from Greenland to Russia's Far East including some of the most established markets in Western Europe and the rapidly growing nations of Eastern and Central Europe.

* The Minute Maid Company is the company's juice business in Houston, Texas. It is the world's leading marketer of juices and juice drinks.

The Coca-Cola Company has a commitment, more than a century old, to social responsibility through philanthropy and good citizenship. The company' reputation for good citizenship results from charitable donations, technical assistance and other demonstrations of support in thousands of communities world-wide.

The Coca-Cola Company continues to activate sponsorship throughout the world, including associations with World Cup Soccer, The National Football League, NASCAR, The Tour de France, The Rugby World Cup, Copa America and numerous local sports teams. The Coca-Cola Company has sponsored the Olympic Games since 1928.

Argentina: The Coca-Cola production began in Argentina in 1942. On the first day the product hit the streets, seven 24-bottle cases were sold, and eighteen single 185 millilitre bottles. By the end of 1943, sales in Argentina amounted to 300, 000 cases using 20 distribution trucks.

At present, Coca-Cola de Argentina S.A. sells around thousand times more products annually than during the historic first year.

Belgium: Belgium was introduced to Coca-Cola in 1927. The Coca-Cola Company currently employs close 2000 people and serves up to 30 000 restaurants, supermarkets and other customers in that country.

China: The national beverage is tea in China. It is the most important beverage. Coca-Cola came to China by the 1920's, but when Mao came to power, he forbade it. But after his death in 1978 Coca-Cola came back to China. Roberto Goizueta, he was the boss of Coca-Cola at this time, could not be intimidated. In China live approximately 1 billion people who drink tea and drink less than one coke per year.

But in the United States a family who consists of four people, drink 3 200 bottles of Coca-Cola per year.

Goizueta used the methods for marketing which were forbidden during the Cultural Revolution, and that worked. His target group was to youth.

Denmark: The first Coca-Cola products were imported into Denmark in the mid -1930's. Today the brands account for about 40 percent of soft-drinks consumed by the 5, 2 million Danes.

France: Coca-Cola was introduced to France in the "Café de l'Europe" in Paris in 1933. Coca-Cola has been the number one soft-drink in France since 1966, and its total sales have doubled in eighty years. Coca-Cola France has created more than 1000 jobs and has invested more than 3 billion francs in France since 1989. Today, French consumers drink an average 88 servings of Coca-Cola products each year.

Mexico: The native tribes did not resist against Coca-Cola. Coca-Cola became an important element of their rituals. Some tribes call it "Holly Water".

The mission of the Coca-Cola Company:

As the world's largest beverage company, they refresh that world. The Company does that by developing superior soft-drinks, both carbonated and noncarbonated, and profitable non-alcoholic beverage systems that create value for their Company, their bottling partners, their customers, their share owners and the communities in which they do business.

* Coca-Cola, the world's most recognised trademark, and other highly valuable trademarks.

* The world's most effective and pervasive system.

* Satisfied customers who make a good profit selling the products

* Their people who are ultimately responsible for building this enterprise.

* Their abundant resources which must be intelligently allocated.

* Their strong global leadership in the beverage industry in particular and in the business world in general.

The secret ingredient:

People love to speculate about the secret ingredient in Coca-Cola. Some say it could be ferreted out by analytical chemistry. Others are sure that they taste a distinctive flavour base. But most are simply delighted that it makes Coca-Cola, the world's premier soft-drink, taste so consistently delicious.

What is the secret ingredient? One secret is locked safely away in a secured vault. But an other is just an arm's length away. It's the consistent quality of Coca-Cola. Wherever business is done by the Coca-Cola Company, the Coca-Cola Company adheres not only to local, state and federal laws for food processing and labelling, but also to their own strict standards for exceptional quality.

Everything they do, from the selection of ingredients to the delivery of their finished products, reflects their commitment to offering us the highest quality products. Most of the flavours are produced as concentrates. With the addition of sweetener and water to the concentrates syrups are produced. Precise control over water and sweetener components must be demonstrated, and quality control professionals must oversee each step of the process.

The syrups tart pure fresh water. In addition to the water and concentrate, sweeteners are added to produce syrup for most products. In the past, only granulated sucrose or liquid sucrose was used in most of the nondiet soft-drinks. In the 1970's, improved technology allowed to begin also using high fructose corn syrup, another type of sugar that provides considerable  flexibility.

The magic of turning syrup into a finished beverage is the role of independent bottlers and canners. They bring together the essential ingredients - syrup, water, and carbon dioxide - and transform them into the essence of refreshment. It is a modern way to archive consistent quality.

Trademark Origins:

Soon after John S. Pemberton prepared the first bottle of Coca-Cola syrup in 1886, his friend and bookkeeper, F. M. Robinson, chose an alliterative name. He wrote the words in the now familiar flowing script, and in 1893, "Coca-Cola" was registered officially in the U.S-Patent and Trademark Office.

But people started to ask for "Coke" and, in 1941, the trademark "Coke" received equal prominence in advertising with "Coca-Cola", and in 1945, "Coke" was registered as a trademark.

The shape design of the contour bottle for Coca-Cola is also a U.S. registered trademark, one of the few package designs to receive this distinction. The bottle was designed in 1915 by Alexander Samuelson, an employee of the Root glass Company of Indiana. Legends suggest that the bottle was shaped deliberately to resemble the fashionable hobble skirt.

The extensions of the Coca-Cola name began in 1982 with the introduction of Diet Coke (also called Coca-Cola Light in some countries). Diet Coke quickly became the number one selling low-calorie soft-drink in the world. In 1983, caffeine-free versions of Coke and Diet Coke were introduced. And in 1985, Cherry Coke made its appearance.

The name "Fanta" was first registered as a trademark in Germany in 1941, when it was used for a few years for a soft-drink created from the available materials and flavours. The name was then revived in 1955 in Naples, Italy, when it was used for the Fanta orange drink we know today. Fanta is now the number one orange soft drink in the world.

The idea for the name of the lemon-lime soft-drink, Sprite, came from early advertising. During the 1940's, an elf with silver hair and a big smile, was used in advertising for Coca-Cola. This character, known affectionately as the "Sprit Boy", urged consumers to buy more of the product. In the late 1950's, the Company developed a citrus-flavoured drink. The short, sharp and memorable sound of Sprite made it an ideal name for the new product. Since another company had been using the name since 1955, the Company had to purchase and register "Sprite" as its property. In 1961, Sprite made its U.S. debut.

A computer search yieled a brand name for the Company's first low-calorie beverage in 1963. Computers were programmed to sort out all Three- and four-letter words in English. "TaB" was selected from some 250 000 words.

Brand history in North America:






Mr Pibb


Mello Yello

Remblin' Root Beer

Diet Coke

Caffeine-free Coca-Cola

Caffeine-free Diet-Coke

Sugar-free Sprite, renamed diet Sprite

Diet Fanta

Cherry Coke

Coca-Cola with a new taste

Coca-Cola Classic

Diet Cherry Coke

Diet Mello Yello

Caffeine-free Coca-Cola Classic


"New" Coke, renamed Coke II







The commitment of the Coca-Cola Company is based on the principle to protect and preserve environment. Working together with their suppliers, customers, regulators and their environmental partners, they can achieve an effective balance between responsible environmental and economic stewardship.

The policies of the Coca-Cola Company:

At the Coca-Cola Company, their business is providing consumers around the world with simple moments of uniquely satisfying refreshment. They work hard to infuse their environmental efforts with that same spirit.

Spirit of refreshment always means conducting the business in ways that protect and preserve the environment. And it means continually searching for new better ways to improve environmental performance.

The framework for their world-wide management of environmental issues affecting their business is The-Coca-Cola-Environmental-Management-System (TCCEMST).TCCEMST ensures management of their compliance with applicable local laws and regulations and with Company policies and strategies, and facilitates the implementation of good environmental practices in the operation of their business.

*Cooperation - They cooperate with public, private and governmental organisations in seeking solutions to environmental problems. The company's skills, energies and resources are directed to those activities and issues to which the Company can make a positive and effective contribution.

* Compliance - They conduct operations in compliance with applicable environmental laws and regulations. Even in the absence of governmental regulation, they operate in an environmentally responsible manner.

* Commitment - The commitment of the Company to protecting and preserving the environment permeates their entire organisation. They believe that effective environmental management systems require the involvement of employees at all levels, and their officers, managers, and employees assume responsibility for its daily implementation.

* Minimising discharges - The Company minimises the discharge of waste materials into the environment by utilising responsible pollution control practices.

Atlanta 1996:

A few things can always bring folks together. Like the Olympic Games. Or art. And of course, there is Coca-Cola. In 1996, these three elements combined to create a unique - yet familiar - exhibition for the Olympic Games in Atlanta.

With the Coca-Cola bottle as their common canvas, artists from 53 different countries created works of art using local materials while capturing the spirit of their native traditions and cultures.

e.g.: a six-feet-tall replica of Stonehenge from England, or a ten-feet-bottle made of rattan, wood and grass from the Philippines. The public response to the exhibition was so enthusiastic, that the Coca-Cola Company sent many of the bottles on a world tour. And 16 bottles have been put on permanent display at the world of Coca-Cola - Las Vegas.

The Olympic Games in Atlanta:

The Coca-Cola Company paid $ 300 000 millions for advertising, and it was worth, because one year later the company had a before-tax of $ 12 billions.

In 1997 Roberto Goizueta died. He brought the Coca-Cola Company from a successful American enterprise to a world power.