India, China sales boost Coca-Cola profits | business | Hindustan Times
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India, China sales boost Coca-Cola profits

business Updated: Feb 10, 2010 08:23 IST

India and China accounted for much of the three per cent growth in the worldwide sales for Coca-Cola in 2009.

Releasing its annual and fourth-quarter results on Tuesday, the world's largest beverage maker reported a profit of $6.82 billion - up 17 per cent from $5.81 billion posted in 2008.

Coca-Cola said the emerging India and China lifted its volume of unit sales by three per cent in the whole year and as much as five per cent in the fourth-quarter. In terms of revenue, Coca-Cola reported sales of $31 billion - almost a billion dollars down from $31.94 raked in 2008.

But the fourth quarter revenue rose to $7.51 billion from $7.13 billion during the same period in 2008 - up almost five per cent, the company said.

Attributing its upbeat yearly numbers to its performance in the fourth quarter, the beverage giant said that in the last quarter its unit sales increased 29 per cent in China and 20 per cent in India.

Other developing markets Brazil and Mexico accounted for eight percent growth in unit sales, the Atlanta-based company said.

The company also reported gains in sales of nonalcoholic ready-to-drink (NARTD) beverages as well as sparkling and still beverages under its global 'Open Happiness' campaign.

"Brand Coca-Cola unit case volume grew a solid 4 per cent in the quarter, with strong growth across global markets, including 22 per cent in India, 13 per cent in China, 12 per cent in France, 5 per cent in Mexico and 4 per cent in Germany. Total sparkling beverage unit case volume increased 3 per cent in the quarter, with international sparkling beverage unit case volume increasing 5 per cent," Coca-Cola said.

"We ended this year on a high note, delivering global volume and value share gains, comparable currency neutral revenue growth, improved productivity and increased cash flows," said Coca-Cola chairman and CEO Muhtar Kent.