Competition Authority to decide over Coca Cola takeover


The Competition Authority (CA) is yet to decide on the proposed acquisition of the non-alcoholic drinks division of beer brewing firm, Kgalagadi Breweries Limited (KBL) by The Coca Cola Company (TCCC).
As per section 56(1) of the Competition Act (Cap 46:09), the Competition Authority has received a merger notification for the acquisition of 50.1 percent of the share capital of Beverage Manufacturers (Botswana) (Pty) Ltd by a company called Strategic Alliance J.V. (Strategic Alliance) from AB InBev Botswana B.V. and AB InBev Africa B.V.
The proposed transaction, according to the Competition Authority entails The Coca-Cola Company (TCCC), through Strategic Alliance, establishing control over TCCC branded non-alcoholic ready-to-drink (NARTD) bottling business of Kgalagadi Breweries (Pty) Ltd (KBL) through the acquisition of 50.1 percent of the share capital of Botswana Softco from AB InBev Botswana and AB InBev Africa.
The acquiring enterprise, Strategic Alliance, is a company incorporated in accordance with the Laws of Mauritius. Strategic Alliance is indirectly controlled by TCCC. TCCC is a publicly listed company registered under the Laws of Delaware, United States of America and brand owner and supplier of concentrates for non-alcoholic beverages which it sells to its authorised bottling and canning companies. The Directors of Strategic Alliance are Randhirsingh Juddoo (Mauritian), Mark Tindall (South African), Jacques Vermeulen (South African) and Shammeekhan Abdoolakhan (Mauritian).
The target enterprise, Botswana Softco, is a dormant company with no material assets or liabilities and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of KBL. Botswana Softco will house the business engaged in preparation, packaging, distribution, promotion and sale of NARTD beverages operated by KBL. The Directors of Botswana Softco are Renaud Beauchamp (Canadian), Boitumelo Paya (Motswana) and Keitumetse Lenkopane (Motswana).
KBL’s non-alcoholic division accounted for a significant 30 percent of KBL total profits. After AB InBev, which bought SABMiller for more than $100-million in October, was complete, The Coca Cola Company also announced that it was buying back the 54 percent stake held by ABInbev in Coca Coca Company Africa (CCBA) for about US3.15 billion.
Should the Coca Cola Company complete its acquisition, it means that KBL, which is owned by ABInbev in majority, will cease selling any product produced by the Coca Cola Company including Coca Cola , Fanta, Sprite, Minute Maid, Powerade and many other non-alcoholic beverages produced by the Coca Cola Company.