The Coca-Cola Company Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

Business/Product Description

Background of the Company

            Coca-Cola also known as Coke was founded in 1886, it began when the Atlanta pharmacist, Dr. John S. Pemberton, created a distinctive tasting soft drink that could be sold at soda fountains.Dr. John created a flavored syrup and combined it with carbon dioxide and it was considered to be excellent in terms of taste. However, the bottling business began in 1899 when two businessmen Joseph and Benjamin were able to secure the exclusive rights to bottle and sell Coca-Cola in United States.

            The Coca-Cola bottling system continued operating as an independent source. In the 1980s, bottling industries began to combine. The Coca-Cola Company was involved in the practice of merging its own operations with two large ownership groups. These groups were John T. Lupton franchises and BCI Holding Corporation's bottle holdings, and formed Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. The stocks of Coca-Cola Company were offered to the public on November 21, 1986.


            Coca-cola Company offers different brands to the consumers all over the world. Coca-Cola is famous for its carbonated drinks, but it deals in other drinks as well. Coca-Cola Company, gives priority in learning its target market and the culture of the country before launching its product. The product line of Coca-Cola Company is wide and it includes different products like Coke, Sprite, Fanta, Diet Coke and Coke classic.The sprite was introduced in 1961, it is a leading lemon-lime soft drinks. The sprite is sold in more than 190 countries and is ranked No.3 soft drink worldwide.The phantom was introduced in 1940, and is considered to be the 2nd largest brand of Coca-Cola Company, worldwide. Moreover, Diet Coke is also known as Coca-Cola Light. It is sugar and calorie-free diet, giving a boost in life. It was introduced in August 9, 1982.

Target Market of Coca-Cola

            When it comes to the target market of Coca-Cola, the company focuses on different target market in the segment. Coke has been targeting a large audience, which is the consumers of soft drinks.The company has been involved in the practice of targeting many generations of people. These people ranged from young to old. Coke had normally appealed the adult generation normally if we look at the history, but currently Coca-Cola came with a new plan of targeting the Young generation.

            Coca-Cola should consider different demographic characteristics of the population, while targeting its target customers through its product line. Age, income and family are normally the characteristics that should be considered. Demographic characteristics like education and ethnicity do not usually concern in terms of its target audience. The age that Company targets for its product line is the teenage normalcy, and portrays hip and cool image to its audience. Moreover, it also targets older people with its classic coke image. The income of the target audience is issued for the company, but in case of Coca-Cola, income is not an issue as the prices of its product line are affordable and teens can easily pay for the coke without relying on the job.Likewise, marital status doesn’t matter for Coke as its product line suits all types of people irrespective of people being single, married with no children or even married with children.

            While targeting the market the geographical consideration, psychographic details and behavior matters a lot. In terms of Coke, it targets people throughout the world and its geographical area is broad. Coke provides soft drinks so in areas where the climate is warm, then thirst of the target audience is targeted. The next concern for the company is psychographic detail like the attitude of people. So it targeted its products in a way that people have an attitude of maintaining good relationship with Coke. In its new commercial, it is clearly shown that young generation is having a good time and making Coke part of their friendship group. Behavior of people is very important for Coke. The behavior of people purchasing coke again and again can be generated via the superb quality of the product line.

Current Strategies of Coca-Cola Company

            The marketing mix will be used for identifying the current strategies which Coca-Cola Company is using for reaching the target market.


            The Coca-Cola Company is one of the leading provider of soft drinks in the world. Its product Sprite is ranked as a No.3 soft drink in the world. Similarly, the introduction of its product Diet Coke overtook Pepsi for second billing...........................

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Coca-Cola was the world's largest manufacturer and distributor of nonalcoholic beverage concentrates and syrups, selling more than $ 24 billion of products in 2006, more than 200 hundred countries. He became a high-growth company under Roberto Goizueta who was president and then chairman and chief executive officer from 1980 until his death in 1997. Under the leadership of Goizueta's market cap Coca-Cola has grown from $ 4.3 billion to $ 180 billion, but after his death in 1997, it dropped to less than $ 115 billion, and for the first time in a long contest Pepsi-Cola has a large market capitalization. Coca-Cola needs a blockbuster breakout growth idea of ​​converting him and his culture. Coca-Cola needs to show Wall Street that he is not married to his legacy model and that this may be the company's growth once again.
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by Edward D. Hess Source: Darden School of Business 10 pages. Publication Date: November 9, 2008. Prod. #: UV0910-PDF-ENG

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