Coke Boosts China Holdings

The company buys a controlling stake in Kerry Beverages, a joint venture.
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Coca-Cola

(KO) - Get Report

said Tuesday that it acquired a controlling stake in Kerry Beverages, a joint venture that manufactures and distributes beverages in China.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed. After the transaction closes, Coca-Cola will own 89.5% of Kerry Beverages. The company will plan to buy the remaining 10.5% by the end of 2008 at the same price per share as the initial purchase, plus interest.

Coca-Cola will have all voting and economic rights over the remaining shares.

Kerry Beverages was formed by Coke and the Hong Kong-based Kerry Group in 1993, and it has majority ownership in 11 joint ventures that distribute Coca-Cola products in nine provinces in China. Kerry Beverages also has a minority ownership in Coke's joint venture bottler for Beijing.

Coke shares were up 11 cents to $44.82 Tuesday.