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This month Coca-Cola South Africa is inviting its employees, consumers and business partners to share in the happiness of 125 years of making a meaningful difference in communities. To commemorate this anniversary, Coca-Cola South Africa is funding community grants totalling R1.25 million to, among other, recycling initiatives. In addition, Coca-Cola South Africa will unite families through its Family Reunion programme.

On the 8th of May 1886 a global icon was born. From humble beginnings 125 years ago, Coca-Cola has become the world’s most valuable brand. Coca-Cola South Africa is celebrating this milestone anniversary by thanking all who have been touched by its business through community grants, family reunions and giveaways.

Coca-Cola was invented in 1886 by pharmacist Dr. John Pemberton in Atlanta, Georgia. Initially sold at soda fountains at a rate of nine servings a day, Coca-Cola has grown into a beverage enjoyed around the world. With operations in more than 200 countries, The Coca-Cola Company has 15 billion- dollar brands. Along with Coca-Cola, the Company has more than 500 brands sparkling and still brands with servings of 1.7 billion each day worldwide.

‚ Coca-Cola is a part of the fabric of society in South Africa. Through our economic, social and environmental investments, we strive to make a positive and meaningful difference in the lives of South Africans. Our 125th anniversary is an opportunity to look back and also to look forward to the next 125 years of growing together,‚ said Bill Egbe, President, Coca-Cola South Africa.

Since first being sold in St. George’s Square in Cape Town, Coca-Cola has invested consistently in initiatives that have helped to improve the standard of living in communities in South Africa and to contribute to the local economy.

Today, Coca-Cola South Africa and its four bottling partners employ approximately 9,000 people in South Africa. The last Economic Impact Survey conducted in 2009 confirmed that the Coca-Cola business contributes approximately 1.4 percent of the nation’s GDP, both directly and indirectly.

In the past 10 years, Coca-Cola has invested $5 billion in the continent and expects to invest an additional $12 billion by 2020. South Africa is the lead market for The Coca-Cola Company on the continent and is well-positioned for continued growth. In addition, South Africa is the sixth market in the world based on the consumption of Coca-Cola.

Last year, Coca-Cola helped Open Happiness across South Africa and the world through its FIFA World Cup activation. This year it intends to continue sharing happiness with the country by celebrating 125 years of the world’s most valuable brand.

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