Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey Says Protests, Riots Hit Businesses In Varying Degrees
James Quincey, chief executive officer of Coca-Cola Co., speaks during a Bloomberg Television interview on day two of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 22, 2020. (Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg)

Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey Says Protests, Riots Hit Businesses In Varying Degrees

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Protests and riots impact businesses to varying degrees, and India needs to solve problems it is grappling with in a "democratic" manner, Coca-Cola Co.'s Global Chairman and Chief Executive Officer James Quincey said on Monday.

Democracy is a big attribute that makes Coca-Cola look at India as a market with long-term potential, Quincey said. The country is the beverage maker’s fifth-largest market by volume, he said, adding that the company aims to double its sales in the next five years to become the fourth largest.

"If there are disruptions in the functioning of a society, there will be some degree of problems for all businesses. India is a vibrant democracy and it needs to work out what is going on. It is hoped that things get worked out in an appropriate democratic manner," Quincey said.

In 2019, Coca-Cola sold 1 billion case units in India for the first time in 21 years of its second run in the country. The maker of the namesake beverage aims to double that figure in the next five years.

There has been a strong growth in India as far as carbonated drinks are concerned, said Quincey. An executive added that the company has reduced the sugar content in Maaza and Thums Up over the past eight months.

When asked about the impact of India’s slowdown on Coca-Cola, Quincey said the firm does not get affected by a quarter of either uptick or downturn in sales. He believes that 2020 will see a surge in sales.

He doesn’t see the coronavirus outbreak affecting sales either but hinted that Coca-Cola's supply chains can get affected if the contagion persists. There is also resilience in the business because of its localised nature in every geography that it operates in.

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