ATLANTA, Jan 2006 – The Coca-Cola Company named Muhtar Kent to the newly-created position of president, Coca-Cola International, effective February 1. In this capacity, Mr. Kent will be responsible for all operations outside of North America, and all group presidents outside of North America — Alex Cummings (Africa), Patrick Siewert (East, South Asia and Pacific Rim), Dominique Reiniche (European Union), and Jose Octavio Reyes (Latin America) — will report to him. Mr. Kent, who currently serves as president and chief operating officer of the Company’s North Asia, Eurasia and Middle East Group, will continue to report directly to Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Neville Isdell.
“As we focus even more intently on execution, it is appropriate that our international operations — which accounted last year for more than 70 percent of our total volume and close to 80 percent of our total operating income — be put under the leadership of a dedicated, full-time executive with extensive operational expertise,” said Mr. Isdell.
“Since he returned to the Company in May 2005, Muhtar has accomplished much, leading with great skill a critical geographic region that is exceptionally diverse, and comprising key current and future growth drivers for our Company — including China, Japan and Russia. The performance of this group has been outstanding during the past year. Muhtar and his team have successfully built upon our presence in these key markets and dramatically deepened the relationships with our bottling partners and our key stakeholders that are crucial to our continued success.
“Muhtar is a proven leader with a wealth of relevant experience and a record of achievement that speaks for itself. He is the ideal person to assume this key position. In his new role, Muhtar will be working with me to further improve our system efforts in our international markets and to help accelerate the on-the-ground execution of our key priorities that are critical to building value for our shareowners,” Mr. Isdell said.
During his 28-year career in the Coca-Cola system and the beverage industry, Mr. Kent has held numerous important positions of increasing responsibility. He served as chief executive officer and president of one of the largest international beverage enterprises in Europe when he led the Efes Beverage Group from 1999 until he rejoined The Coca-Cola Company last year. Efes is a highly successful beverage company with operations throughout Europe, Eurasia and Asia.
Under Mr. Kent’s leadership, Efes experienced extraordinary growth, with increases in volume, revenues, cash operating profit and net income. Efes is also the largest local shareholder of Turkish bottler Coca-Cola Icecek and one of the leading breweries in Europe, with a presence from the Adriatic to the Pacific Ocean. During that time, in addition to taking Efes Breweries International public on the London Stock Exchange, Mr. Kent served as a board member of Coca-Cola Icecek.
Mr. Kent has also served in other executive management capacities in the Coca-Cola system. Between 1995 and 1998, he was managing director of Coca-Cola Amatil-Europe, covering bottling operations in 12 countries.
Mr. Kent first joined The Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta in 1978 and has held a variety of marketing and operations roles throughout his career. In 1985, he was appointed general manager of Coca-Cola Turkey and Central Asia. From 1989 to 1995, he served as president of the Company’s East Central Europe Division and senior vice president of Coca-Cola International, with responsibility for 23 countries. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from Hull University, England and a Master of Science degree in Administrative Sciences from London City University.
The Coca-Cola Company is the world’s largest beverage company. Along with Coca-Cola, recognized as the world’s most valuable brand, the Company markets four of the world’s top five soft drink brands, including Diet Coke, Fanta and Sprite, and a wide range of other beverages, including diet and light soft drinks, waters, juices and juice drinks, teas, coffees and sports drinks. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company’s beverages at a rate exceeding 1 billion servings each day.
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