Economics for Global Decision Makers Essay

The 125 year old Coca Cola Company currently ranks 70th on the List of Fortune 500 Companies for 2011. Coca Cola began in 1886 when pharmacist John Pemberton in Atlanta, GA, sold a caramel colored mix that was combined with carbonated water and sold for $. 05 cents a glass at Jacobs Pharmacy. The pharmacy sold approximately 9 glasses the first day totaling $. 45 cents a day average. After John Pemberton passed away in 1888 the company rights were acquired by a business name named Griggs Candler for $2,300 (The Coca Cola Company, 2011).

Candler led the way for the innovative product to become a business. He began promoting the product on everyday products so that the logo was everywhere and the aggressive tactic worked. The demand grew so quickly that there three production facilities were up and operating within 7 years. By 1920 there were over 1,000 bottlers of the product and in the 40’s the president helped to lay the international groundwork for the company to begin doing business overseas and ensuring that a Coke was available to many for a small price.

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Currently the company now has a brand list that exceeds 500 with 3,500 plus beverages. This company has nearly 140,000 employees and operates in more than 200 countries (The Coca Cola Company, 2011). On average a 16oz cola sells for $. 99 cents. In 2011 the company reported net income in the amount of $11. 8 billion for 2010 and an increase of operating revenue of 16% to $9. 5 billion of which 70% was sales generated outside of the United States (Company Fact Sheet, 2011).

The company has won many awards for advertising, packaging innovation and even had an outstanding turnout of tourists at the World of Coke Museum and headquarters in Atlanta. Economic, Social, and Political Force Effects Within the past 125 years many economic, social and political forces have changed the country and must have influenced this. Coke is an American Icon and has had to readapt and change with the times. It was these changes that made Coke not only a product that could relate to its consumers but shared a feeling or an emotion that many generations cherish as a culture.

Everything about the culture of Coke can be tied to a time in the era of the product. For example the now antique 5 Cent Coke logos were made during the time of World War II when President Eisenhower requested that bottling plants be opened overseas so that all American soldiers had access to a 5 Cent Cold Coke. During the war, many people enjoyed their first taste of the beverage, and when peace finally came, the foundations were laid for Coca-Cola to do business overseas. Prior to the beginning of the 2008 recession on average a 20oz Coca Cola was $1. 0. During the recession, Coke took action and began releasing smaller versions of the beverages creating 8oz cans and also designing new retro aluminum bottles to entice the buyers to buy. Advertising is the main means for the company staying in tuned with its consumer. The advertising has always stayed current from the infamous “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke. Peace commercial in the 70’s to the current “Open Happiness” campaign, even the recognizable winter white polar bears that come out every year during the holidays.

Another major social force is the pro health movement that has people avoiding surgery soft drinks. Coke had to regain the lost market by adopting new products and introduce juice to their product line. These are just a few examples of how external forces can have an effect on a large corporation. SWOT Analysis of The Coca Cola Company Having 125 of years of experience puts Coca Cola in a position to have many strengths to leverage. The most noticeable strength is that of their widely known reputation.

With consumers trusting their product in over 200 countries that means that their logo and brand name is a premium brand among consumers worldwide. Coca Cola’s logo is recognized nearly everywhere. This enables a company like Coke to be able to create new product lines and new products because those who trust Coke will venture with the company and try their products, giving them an edge over smaller companies who do not have the marketability of that of Coke. Coke has used the brand name strength to create other best selling soft drinks and beverages and allowed them to expand into the juice line.

Coke’s brand is currently valued at $67 billion. To maximize brand love and brand value, we believe in the importance and enduring impact of powerful storytelling that engages consumers with our brands and Company (The Coca Cola Company, 2010). At times people may buy a Snapple or a Sprite and not realize that those are part of Cokes product line. Infrastructure is also strength for this company. Coca Cola was extremely lucky to have had help from the United States in the 40’s during the world war to get started in building bottling plants around the world so that the drink was widely available.

Having the ability to provide Coke products as far back before International trade was widely recognized as a business must, gave the organization the upper hand in becoming an internationally known product. Global partnerships are one way we establish connections in consumers’ daily lives while promoting our brands and beverage portfolio (The Coca Cola Company, 2010). The size of the company is defiantly an area that causes weaknesses for Coke. With the company having many bottling plants and distributers, it would be difficult for the company to ensure that their products are being dispensed at their optimal quality standards.

I know I have personally experienced going to a restaurant that dispensed coke and when I sipped my drink got a bad taste where the syrup and carbonated water was not in proportion. A consumer having a bad experience with their product is something that the company has no control over since they only produce and distribute the Cola syrup. Looking at the figures released for Coca Cola, it appears that revenues nearly doubled than that of the previous year however production did not double.

This could be in part due to the increase in price of the beverages. Coke having to raise their prices among their consumers during a recession is the exact opposite for being known for providing their product to everyone midst hard times, it was what Coke was known for. Further their business was built on the original Coca Cola Classic. Although they have successfully attempted to recreate the classic drink for the more health conscious with the Diet Coke, and the Diet, Caffeine free Coke, these are not quite the same. Leaving consumers like me ho don’t like the alternatives but cannot have the original because of the negative health effects that goes along drinking the beverage. The classic drink that is loved is loaded with sugar and caffeine and have also been pulled from vending machines in schools because so. The Coca Cola Company seizes every opportunity to become more in the public eye in any country that it sells its products in. Digital media is an increasingly powerful channel for communicating with our consumers, particularly teens (The Coca Cola Company, 2010).

The company seeks to participate in many large widely viewed events. The company has been a sponsor of the Olympics since 1928, as an Olympic Games sponsor provides an ideal outlet for connecting consumers to our brands by illustrating how our products refresh athletes, volunteers, officials and spectators during the Olympic Games (The Coca Cola Company, 2010). The company has their own Facebook that has millions of fans and has apps that get consumers involved in their marketing campaigns. Both locally and globally, we invest in community initiatives to strengthen the communities where we live.

Coke does this by delivering innovative products, packaging and systems; strengthening our advanced global supply chain; enhancing our presence in communities; and managing our impact on the world’s natural resources (The Coca Cola Company, 2010). Coca Cola Company faces many threats, being in so many markets the company faces multi threats or the same threat many times in other countries. There are other soft drink competitors that have created their own Cola’s, Pepsi and Coke were major competitors and still are.

They have even raced each other into the juice and enhanced water market. This company faces major threats because of the many different style governments that it operates in. The company being an American Icon serving in hostile countries can place great danger for the company and its employees. At any time governments could require them to participate in corruption, face extreme tax or import/export tariffs or other barriers to distributing the product. Predicting, Planning and Adjusting for the Future

Coca Cola is and has always been ahead of its time, and for this reason the company has been able to sustain itself for the past 125 years. The company has had to operate in many climates, geographic regions, during wars and at the turn of the technology century. Despite the many changes that this company has seen our nation go through it has still managed to stay current with the times and retain the ability to relate to the consumers. With the history that this company has, they would be able to predict sales forecasts and other needs of its consumers.

The company is currently working on a sustainability mission that they hope to reach by 2020. For this corporation to see their impacts on the environment and take the needed steps to ensure that they are leaving a smaller Eco footprint they hope that this will ensure that the consumers see them as good stewards. Further the company has involved the consumers in their products; they have sought to become more “Green” during the green movement by using less plastic in their bottles and beginning the use of vehicles that use less or no gasoline.

This company has reached out to customers by predicting that the health conscious would want healthier beverage options, taken steps to become more environmental friendly and have gotten the attention of the new generation through technology. This goes to show that The Coca Cola Company sees itself as a company that will survive many changes and it will continue to predict, and plan for the future.


1. Company Fact Sheet. (2011). Retrieved June 29, 2011, from CocaCola. Com: http://www. thecoca-colacompany. om/ourcompany/pdf/Company_Fact_Sheet. pdf 2. The Coca Cola Company. (2010). 2010 Annual Report. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from CocaCola. Com: http://www. thecoca-colacompany. com/ourcompany/ar/pdf/TCCC_2010_Annual_Review_Year_in_Review. pdf 3. The Coca Cola Company. (2011). Heritage Timeline. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from CocaCola. Com: http://heritage. coca-cola. com/ 4. The Coca Cola Company. (2011). Our Company. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from CocaCola. Com: http://www. thecoca-colacompany. com/ourcompany/index. html


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