Coca-Cola Co. has entered a deal to buy Anheuser-Busch InBev NV’s 54.5% stake in Coca-Cola Beverages Africa for $3.15 billion, the companies said.
In addition, the companies have reached an agreement for Coca-Cola to buy AB InBev’s interest in bottling operations in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Swaziland, Lesotho, El Salvador and Honduras for an undisclosed amount, according to a statement Wednesday.
Coca-Cola plans to hold all of these territories temporarily until they can be refranchised to other partners, according to the statement.
Coca-Cola, the world’s largest soft-drink maker, is exiting all its bottling operations in China, the world’s second-largest economy, as it pursues an asset-light strategy. The Atlanta-based company has announced plans to speed up refranchising of its bottling operations as it seeks to reduce exposure to facilities that are more capital-intensive and low-margin.
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