By Benjamin Snyder
August 14, 2014

Coca-Cola (KO) and Monster Beverage Corporation (MNST) announced Thursday that they’ve entered into a partnership, which sees the soda-maker grabbing a 16.7% equity stake in the energy drink company.

Coca-Cola will make a net cash payment of $2.15 billion to Monster.

The deal is expected to “accelerate growth for both companies,” according to a release, including giving Monster access to Coca-Cola’s “worldwide bottling system.” Along with the 16.7% stake in Monster, Coca-Cola will have two directors on Monster’s board.

Both will also undergo restructuring as part of the partnership. For example, Coca-Cola will “transfer ownership of its worldwide energy business, including NOS, Full Throttle, Burn, Mother, Play and Power Play, and Relentless, to Monster.”

Monster, meanwhile, will transfer its non-energy business, to Coca-Cola. Those offerings include Hansen’s Natural Sodas, Peace Tea, Hubert’s Lemonade and Hansen’s Juice Products.

“The Coca-Cola Company continues to identify innovative approaches to partnerships that enable us to stay at the forefront of consumer trends in the beverage industry,” said Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent in the release.

“Our business will be bolstered by The Coca-Cola Company energy brands we will acquire, providing us with complementary energy product offerings in many geographies, as well as access to new channels, including vending and specialty accounts,” added Rodney Sacks, CEO of Monster.

Bloomberg reported in January that Coca-Cola had looked into an acquisition of Monster in early 2012, citing a person familiar with the matter.

In May, Coca-Cola purchased additional shares of Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR) to take a 16% stake in the do-it-yourself beverage maker.

The news also comes in light of a study recently published that found sales are slowing for sports and energy drinks as customers start to question health claims of energy drink additives.


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