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News > Deals
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Coke buys Odwalla
graphic October 30, 2001: 7:27 a.m. ET

No. 1 soft drink maker to pay $181M for fruit and vegetable juice company.
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  • Coke mulls Odwalla buy - Oct. 22, 2001
  • Odwalla guilty, pays record fine in E. coli case - Jul. 23, 1998
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  • Coca-Cola
  • Odwalla
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    NEW YORK (CNNmoney) - Coca-Cola Co. has agreed to buy Odwalla Inc. for $181 million in a move to boost its juice business and keep up with rival PepsiCo.

    Coca-Cola (KO: Research, Estimates), the world's biggest soft drink maker, will offer $15.25 for each Odwalla share, the California-based company said Tuesday, representing nearly a 30 percent premium over Odwalla's Monday closing price of $11.83.

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    Odwalla (ODWA: Research, Estimates), whose products include fresh fruit and vegetable juices, dairy-free shakes and spring water, will become a separate business unit of Minute Maid Co., Coca-Cola's juice division. Its current management will remain in place, and CEO Stephen Williamson will report to Minute Maid CEO Don Knauss.

    The deal is the latest by Coke in what some analysts say are moves to keep up with PepsiCo Inc., the nation's No. 2 soft drink maker.

    In the past year, Coke has acquired Planet Java, a maker of coffee drinks, and Mad River Traders Inc., which distributes New Age teas, juices, lemonades and sodas. Last year, PepsiCo paid an estimated $370 million for a majority stake in South Beach Beverage Co. and control over the popular SoBe line of fruit and tea drinks.

    Check food and beverage stocks here

    PepsiCo also obtained the prized Gatorade sports drink through its recently completed $13 billion acquisition of Quaker Oats Co.

    Odwalla stock jumped 63 cents to $11.83 Monday, a gain of 5.6 percent, while Coke fell 53 cents to $48.61. graphic


    -- Reuters contributed to this report

      RELATED STORIES

    Coke mulls Odwalla buy - Oct. 22, 2001

    Odwalla guilty, pays record fine in E. coli case - Jul. 23, 1998

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    Coca-Cola

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