Coca‑Cola Hellenic Bottling Company (“CCHBC”) announces its intention to acquire, jointly with The Coca‑Cola Company (“TCCC”), the leading Swiss mineral water bottler, Valser Mineralquellen AG (“Valser”), a private company owned by the Hess Group AG of Bern.
The acquisition comprises a number of well-established mineral water brands, including Valser Classic, Valser Naturelle and Valser Limelite, in addition to the company’s production and distribution facilities at Vals and Zizers.
The purchase of Valser is in line with the strategy of CCHBC and TCCC to broaden their product portfolios by continuing to expand their presence into other alcohol free beverage categories in addition to carbonated soft drinks.
Completion of this transaction remains subject to regulatory approval and formal acceptance by the Board of TCCC for its participation. The Board of CCHBC has already approved its portion of the purchase.
Max Lienhard, Chairman and Chief Executive of the Hess Group, comments:
“This sale represents an ideal way of securing the continuity of Valser and enabling it to achieve its full potential. We are confident that the Coca‑Cola system, a tried and tested partner with whom Valser has co-operated for almost 20 years, offers a sustained strengthening of our brands and will significantly enhance the prospects of the mineral water business in the future.”
Irial Finan, Managing Director of CCHBC, adds:
“This acquisition is in line with our strategy to broaden the group’s product mix beyond carbonated soft drinks. Valser is the premier mineral water company in Switzerland, with impressive sales growth in recent years. The Valser brands are an ideal complement to our existing range in Switzerland, including Coca‑Cola, Fanta, Sprite and Nestea.”
9th July 2002
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