Coca-Cola may be one of the world’s most dominant beverage corporations, but that isn’t about to stop it from getting even bigger. A juicy rumor is making the rounds, and it involves Coca-Cola and what could potentially be its biggest acquisition yet. If the rumor turns out to be true, the soft drink empire will be bringing Monster Beverage Corporation into its ample fold.
For those who remember when Monster energy drinks were but a small section of the fiercely independent California-based all-natural juice and soda producer Hansen Naturals, an acquisition by Coca-Cola may seem a little strange. Then again, those days have flown long ago – even in an economic downturn, energy drink sales have been unnaturally strong (almost as if they were being propelled forward by sugar and caffeine long after midnight) and Monster has led the pack with a 34.8 percent volume share of the U.S. market. Knowing full well what side its bread is buttered on these days, Hansen Naturals legally changed its name to Monster Beverage Corporation in January of this year, and hasn’t looked back.
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Is the acquisition a sure thing? Certainly not, otherwise it would be a fact and not a rumor. According to the Wall Street Journal, Monster’s high price – the company is reportedly worth a cool $13 billion, taking into account the 17 percent share price leap it enjoyed today in light of the acquisition rumors – could prove a stumbling block. Coke may decide that the distribution rights it already owns are enough for them. There’s also the fact that neither Coca-Cola nor Monster are responding to the rumors. But if it does happen, we wonder what exactly that will mean for Monster Beverages – not the energy drink itself, but the rest of the portfolio like Hubert’s Lemonade, Blue Sky, and of course Hansen’s sodas. If anything ever happens to our beloved Mandarin Lime soda, we will mourn like we did when we lost Original New York Seltzer (ie: we never stopped). Hopefully, if the acquisition does take, Coke will see fit to remember that every part of the company has made it successful, not just the part that’s trending right now.