The History of Coca-Cola
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The History of Coca-Cola
The Coca-Cola company started out as an insignificant one man business and
over the last one hundred and ten years it has grown into one of the
largest companies in the world. The first operator of the company was Dr.
John Pemberton and the current operator is Roberto Goizueta. Without
societies help, Coca-Cola could not have become over a 50 billion dollar
Coca-Cola was invented by Dr. John Pemberton, an Atlanta pharmacist. He
concocted the formula in a three legged brass kettle in his backyard on May
8, 1886. He mixed a combination of lime, cinnamon, coca leaves, and the
seeds of a Brazilian shrub to make the fabulous beverage(Things go better
with Coke 14). Coca-Cola debuted in Atlanta’s largest pharmacy, Jacob’s
Pharmacy, as a five cent non-carbonated beverage. Later on, the carbonated
water was added to the syrup to make the beverage that we know today as
Coca-Cola was originally used as a nerve and brain tonic and a medical
elixir. Coca-Cola was named by Frank Robinson, one of Pemberton’s close
friends, he also penned the famous Coca-Cola logo in unique script. Dr.
John Pemberton sold a portion of the Coca-Cola company to Asa Candler,
after Pemberton’s death the remainder was sold to Candler. Pemberton was
forced to sell because he was in a state of poor health and was in debt.
He had paid $76.96 for advertising, but he only made $50.00 in profits.
Candler acquired the whole company for $2,300(Coca-Cola multiple pages).
Candler achieved a lot during his time as owner of the company. On
January 31, 1893, the famous Coca-Cola formula was patented. He also
opened the first syrup manufacturing plant in 1884. His great achievement
was large scale bottling of Coca-Cola in 1899. In 1915, The Root Glass
Company made the contour bottle for the Coca-Cola company. Candler
aggressively advertised Coca-Cola in newspapers and on billboards. In the
newspapers, he would give away coupons for a free Coke at any fountain.
Coca-Cola was sold after the Prohibition Era to Ernest Woodruff for 25
million dollars. He gave Coca-Cola to his son, Robert Woodruff, who would
be president for six decades(Facts, Figures, and Features Multiple pages).
Robert Woodruff was an influential man in Atlanta because of his
contributions to area colleges, universities, businesses and organizations.
When he made a contribution, he would never leave his name, this is how he
became to be known as "Mr. Anonymous." Woodruff introduced the six bottle
carton in 1923.
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Coca Coca-cola Cola Company Coca-cola Company Beverage Multiple Lime Roberto Backyard
He also made Coca-Cola available through vending machine
in 1929, that same year, the Coca-Cola bell glass was made available. He
started advertising on the radio in the 1930s and on the television in
1950. Currently Coca-Cola is advertised on over five hundred TV channels
around the world. In 1931, he introduced the Coke Santa as a Christmas
promotion and it caught on. Candler also introduced the twelve ounce Coke
can in 1960. The Coca-Cola contour bottle was patented in 1977. The two
liter bottle was introduced in 1978, the same year the company also
introduced plastic bottles(Coca-Cola multiple pages).
Woodruff did have one dubious distinction, he raised the syrup prices for
distributors. But he improved efficiency at every step of the
manufacturing process. Woodruff also increased productivity by improving
the sales department, emphasizing quality control, and beginning large-
scale advertising and promotional campaigns. Woodruff made Coke available
in every state of the Union through the soda fountain. For all of these
achievements he earned the name, "The Boss"(Facts, Figures, and Features
In 1985, the Coca-Cola Company made what has been known as one of the
biggest marketing blunder. The Coca-Cola company stumbled onto the new
formula in efforts to produce diet Coke. They put forth 4 million dollars
of research to come up with the new formula. The decision to change their
formula and pull the old Coke off the market came about because taste tests
showed a distinct preference for the new formula. The new formula was a
sweeter variation with less tang, it was also slightly smoother(Demott 54).
Robert Woodruff's death was a large contributor to the change because he
stated that he would never change Coca-Cola's formula. Another factor that
influenced the change was that Coke's market share fell 2.5 percent in four
years. Each percentage point lost or gain meant 200 million dollars. A
financial analyst said, "Coke's market share fell from 24.3 percent in 1980
to 21.8 percent in 1984"(Things go better with Coke 14). This was the
first flavor change since the existence of the Coca-Cola company.
The change was announced April 23, 1985 at the Vivian Beaumont Theater at
the Lincoln Center. Some two hundred TV and newspaper reporters attended
this very glitzy announcement. It included a question and answer session,
a history of Coca-Cola, and many other elements(Oliver 131).
The debut was accompanied by an advertising campaign that revived the Coca-
Cola theme song of the early 1970s, "I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke"(Say
it ain't so, Coke 24). The Jingle read like this:
I'd like to teach the world to sing
In perfect harmony.
I'd like to buy the world a Coke
And keep it company.
The change to the world's best selling soft drink was heard by 81 percent
of the United States population within twenty-four hours of the
announcement. Within a week of the change, one thousand calls a day were
flooding the company's eight hundred number (1-800-GET-COKE). Most of the
callers were shocked and/or outraged, many said that they were considering
switching to Pepsi. Within six weeks, the eight hundred number was being
jammed by six thousand calls a day. The company also fielded over forty
thousand letters, which were all answered and each person got a coupon for
the new Coke. A retired Air Force officer, explained in a letter to the
Coca-Cola company that he wanted to be cremated and interred in a Coke can,
but now that this change had come about he was reconsidering(Pendergrast
Multiple pages). Sharlotte Donneally, a thirty-six year old anthropologist
said, "I hate the new stuff"(Demott 60). Wendy Koskela, a thirty-five year
old vice president of an insurance company said, "It's too sweet. It
tastes like Pepsi." She also stated, "Real Coke had punch. This taste
almost like it's flat"(Demott 60). Many American consumers of Coca-Cola
asked if they would have the final say.
When Pepsi heard that the Coca-Cola company was changing its secret formula
they said that it was a decision that Pepsi tastes better. Roger Enrico,
the president and CEO of Pepsi-Cola wrote a letter to every major newspaper
in the U.S. to declare the victory, the letter read like this(Oliver 128):
It gives me great pleasure to offer each of you my heartiest
congratulations. After eighty-seven years of going at it eyeball to eyeball,
the other guy just blinked. Coca-Cola is withdrawing their product from
the marketplace, and is reformulating brand Coke to be more like
Pepsi...There is no question the long-term market success of Pepsi has
forced this move...Maybe they finally realized what most of us have known
for years, Pepsi tastes better than Coke. Well, people in trouble tend to
do desperate things...and we'll have to keep our eye on them. But for now,
I say, victory is sweet, and we have earned a celebration. We're going to
declare a holiday on Friday. Enjoy!
Coca-Cola officials said, "The new formula will boost Coke's share by 1
percent. That is worth
200 million dollars a year." Coca-Cola management had to decide: Do
nothing or "buy the world a new Coke"(Things go better with Coke 14). They
decided to develop the new formula. Roberto Goizueta, the president of the
Coca-Cola Company stated, "The old Coke formula, with its secret flavoring
ingredient, called Merchandise 7X, will stay locked in the Trust Company of
Georgia bank vault in Atlanta, never to be used again"(Demott et. al 55).
This is what many Coke officials said, "This is the most significant soft
drink development in the company's history"(Demott et. al 54).
The change back to the old Coke was known as the Second Coming. Roberto
Goizueta said, "Today, we have two messages to deliver to the American
consumer, first, to those of you who are drinking Coca-Cola with its great
new taste, our thanks...But there is a second group of consumers to whom we
want to speak to today and our message to this group is simple: We have
heard you"(Oliver 178). On July 10, 1985, eighty-seven days after the new
Coke was introduced, the old Coke was brought back in addition to the new
one. This was greatly due to dropping market share and consumer protest.
The market share fell from a high of 15 percent to a low of 1.4
Roberto Goizueta and Donald Keough took full blame for this failed product
launch. Don Keough, Coca-Cola president, said in response to the comeback,
"The truth is we are not dumb and we are not that smart"(New bottle 18).
Roberto Goizueta's response when the change about, "We have heard
you"(Moore 8). This was said to be a classic marketing retreat. Coca-Cola
executives admitted that they had goofed by taking the old Coke off the
market. One old Coke loyalist said, "The company had spoiled the taste of
its ninety nine year old soft drink and betrayed a national trust"(Moore 8).
Ike Herbert, a Coke marketer said, "You would have thought we had invented
a cure for cancer"(Pendergrast 366). The Coca-Cola company's eight hundred
number received eighteen thousand calls of gratitude. One caller said they
felt like a lost friend had returned home. Be the comeback of old Coke
drove stock prices to the highest level in twelve years. This was said to
be the only way to regain the lead on the cola wars(Classic comeback of an
old champ 12).
In 1979, fifteen hundred employees moved to the new corporate headquarters
in Atlanta located on North Avenue. The new corporate headquarters came to
be known as "The Tower." During the time when the research for the new
formula was taking place, it was known as "The Bunker"(Oliver 53). The
known ingredients in present day Coca-Cola are water. caffeine, phosphoric
acid, vanilla, various oils and essences and extracts of the coca leaf and
the kola nut. The one in four hundred part of cocaine was removed from
Coca-Cola in 1903(Demott 54). Five years after the infamous Coke fiasco,
the Coca-Cola company tried to bring back the reformulated Coke. The
effort to phase in Coke II into the soda market was quite
During the Woodruff era, Mr. Woodruff made a promise to the armed forces of
the United States to supply Coca-Cola to every serviceperson. He said that
costs and location did not matter, he supplied 5 billion bottles to the
service. In the mid-1970's, more than half Coca-Cola sold was outside of
the U.S. Coca-Cola products outsell closest competitor by more than two to
one. One in every two colas and one in every three soft drinks is a Coca-
Cola product(Facts, Figures, and Features 16). The best known trademark in
the world is sold in about one hundred and forty countries to 5.8 billion
people in eighty different languages. This is why Coca-Cola is the largest
soft drink company in the world. Coca-Cola is worth more than 58 billion
dollars on the stock market(Coca-Cola, The Coca-Cola Company 232).
For more than 65 years, Coca-Cola has been a sponsor of the Olympics. The
1996 Summer Olympics will be held in Atlanta, Georgia, the home of Coca-
Cola. One great earmark that the Coca-Cola company has is helping the
people of Atlanta. They accomplish this through scholarships, hotlines,
donations and contributions, etc. Another large accomplishment that the
Coca-Cola has, is being the first company to make and use recycled plastic
bottles. One way to see all of the achievements of the Coca-Cola company
is to visit the World of Coke in Atlanta. It houses a collection of
memorabilia, samples of the products, exhibits, and many other exciting
items(Facts, Figures, and Features Multiple pages).
All of what has been said is the basis of what Coca-Cola was built on.
Without societies help, Coca-Cola could not have become over a 50 billion
History Of Coca-cola Essay
2457 Words10 Pages
History Of Coca-Cola
Coca-Cola was born on may 8th, 1886 at the hands of Dr.
John Smith Pemberton. In the laboratory of his house at 107
Marietta Street, Atlanta, Georgia he finally settled
on the syrup later to be known as Coca-Cola.1.
John Pemberton was born in Knoxville, Georgia in 1831.
At the age of 17, he
attended the Botanical Medicine School of the State of
Georgia.2. After school he owned a drug store in Columbus,
Georgia and fought for the confederacy in the Civil War.
During the war he became addicted to morphine from an
injury.3. After the war ended, he moved to Atlanta, Georgia
and kept up his pharmacy business at home. He created such
patent medicines as Globe flower Cough Syrup, Extract of…show more content…
Frank Robinson and David Roe were introduced into a
partnership with Pemberton a few months before he created
the final product.
Instead of Robinson and Roe selling him a device that was
able to print two colors with the same pressing, he sold
them on his product. The three of them along with an old
partner of Pemberton’s, Ed Holland, created the original
Coca-Cola corporation.8. Robinson immediately took over
advertising, manufacture, and promotion of the product. He
is the one who created the white spencarian handwriting on
red background. Today it is the most widely recognized
trademark in the world. The first ad for the new product was
placed by Robison in the Atlanta daily Journal on May 29th,
1886. It read
"Coca-Cola, delicious! Refreshing Invigorating!
The new and Popular Soda Fountain Drink,
containing properties of the wonderful coca plant and
the famous cola nuts.
For sale by Willis Venable and Nunnally & Rawson."
Official Coca-Cola folklore states that it was merely a
medicine mixed with plain water.9. Not only does this
advertisement state otherwise but it also gives the reason
for the name.
Coca-Cola started off well but, Pemberton had serious
problems involving health. He was severely addicted to
morphine and cocaine and it wasn’t long before this started
to interfere with