Larry Tanenbaum and Junior Bridgeman Bring Long-Term Commitment and Entrepreneurial Energy to Support Coca-Cola’s Vision of Being a ‘Total Beverage Company’ Across Canada
Todd Parsons, Executive Vice President at Kilmer Group to Lead Canada’s New Bottler as President and CEO; Ken Tanenbaum to Serve as Executive Chairman
TORONTO – October 1, 2018 – Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited announced today that it has closed on a transaction to acquire Coca-Cola Refreshments Canada (CCRC) from The Coca-Cola Company. This closing comes six months after The Coca-Cola Company announced a letter of intent with the Tanenbaum and Bridgeman families, concluding a broader plan to refranchise all Company-owned bottling operations in North America to strong, independent franchise owners.
Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited (CCCBL) welcomed 5,800 associates to the family on Saturday, Sept. 29 as it assumed all Coca-Cola bottling and distribution operations across Canada. This includes a national network of over 50 sales and distribution centres and five production facilities that were formerly part of Coca-Cola Refreshments Canada (CCRC).
CCCBL is a Canadian-based joint venture between prominent businessman and philanthropist Larry Tanenbaum O.C., and Junior Bridgeman, a former NBA player, renowned entrepreneur and owner of Kansas City-based Heartland Coca-Cola Bottling Company.
Taking the helm at CCCBL as it embarks on this new venture are Todd Parsons, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Stephen du Toit, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. CCCBL will also be led by a Board of Directors that includes Ken Tanenbaum, Executive Chairman, and Rick A. Frazier, Executive Vice Chairman.
Together, Parsons and du Toit bring decades of experience from the consumer-packaged goods industry to CCCBL. Most recently, Parsons was Executive Vice President of Investment Operations at Kilmer Group, and previously served as COO and CFO at specialty frozen baked goods company Give & Go Prepared Foods.
du Toit has been with The Coca-Cola Company since 1999 and has held many positions around the world in Supply Chain management. He relocated to Canada in 2011 and has held various positions of increasing significance with the Canadian bottling organization including: VP, Manufacturing; General Manager of the Minute Maid juice business; SVP, Supply Chain leading overall strategic, tactical and operational initiatives for the Canadian supply chain, and most recently, he has been head of the Business Transformation Office where he led a team engaged in productivity initiatives and this transaction.
“With a history that spans more than 120 years, Coca-Cola has deep roots in Canada --and we do not take that for granted,” said Todd Parsons, President and CEO, Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited. “We’re humbled and privileged to be custodians of that legacy as we return Coca-Cola bottling in Canada to its local roots. We’re energized by the opportunity to innovate and grow with our customers, and to continue strengthening our relationships with the communities we serve.”
Added Shane Grant, business unit president of The Coca-Cola Company in Canada, Coca-Cola Ltd (CCL): “We’re extremely excited to work with our new partners at CCCBL to harness the full power of our incredible system. With their passion for our brands and commitment to world-class portfolio execution, we’re confident we have the right partners for our business to continue to grow and succeed in the Canadian market.”
The closing of CCCBL marks the final transaction to complete The Coca-Cola Company’s implementation of the 21st Century Beverage Partnership Model in its flagship North America market. The bottling system in North America is now comprised of economically aligned partners that can serve major customers while maintaining strong, local ties throughout diverse communities across Canada and the United States.
Financial terms of the CCCBL agreement were not disclosed.
About Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited
Coca-Cola Canada Bottling Limited employs 5,800 associates and operates over 50 facilities including five production plants in all ten provinces. The company offers a wide variety of beverage brands, many of which come in no-calorie and low-calorie options. These beverages include sparkling soft drinks, still waters, juices and fruit beverages, sports drinks, energy drinks and ready-to-drink teas. The company is proud to offer some of the most popular brands in Canada including Coca-Cola®, Diet Coke®, Coca-Cola® Zero Sugar, Coca-Cola Life™, Sprite®, Fanta®, Barq’s®, NESTEA®, POWERADE®, Minute Maid®, DASANI® and vitaminwater®; and our partner brands Canada Dry®, Monster Energy®, evian®, and A&W®.
With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, the company is focused on initiatives that reduce environmental footprint, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. For more information, go to www.cokecanada.com.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is a total beverage company, offering over 500 brands in more than 200 countries and territories. In addition to the company’s Coca-Cola brands, our portfolio includes some of the world’s most valuable beverage brands, such as AdeS soy-based beverages, Ayataka green tea, Dasani waters, Del Valle juices and nectars, Fanta, Georgia coffee, Gold Peak teas and coffees, Honest Tea, innocent smoothies and juices, Minute Maid juices, Powerade sports drinks, Simply juices, smartwater, Sprite, vitaminwater and ZICO coconut water. We’re constantly transforming our portfolio, from reducing sugar in our drinks to bringing innovative new products to market. We’re also working to reduce our environmental impact by replenishing water and promoting recycling. With our bottling partners, we employ more than 700,000 people, helping bring economic opportunity to local communities worldwide. Learn more at Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.
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