‘Put The Cocaine Back In’: Elon Musk Jokes About Buying Coca-Cola

In this file photo taken on March 14, 2019 Tesla CEO Elon Musk reacts during the unveiling of the new Tesla Model Y in Hawthorne, California. Frederic J. BROWN / AFP
In this file photo taken on March 14, 2019 Tesla CEO Elon Musk reacts during the unveiling of the new Tesla Model Y in Hawthorne, California. Frederic J. BROWN / AFP

 

 

An apparently emboldened Elon Musk has decided to flex his buying muscles further by joking about buying multinational beverage company, Coca-Cola on Thursday.

According to Forbes, the soft drink giant is valued at $286 billion, while boasting of assets worth $94.35 billion as compared to Musk’s net worth of $240.3 billion as of 2022.

“Next, I’m buying Coca-Cola to put the cocaine back in,” Musk tweeted in reference to the 1886 discontinued recipe for adding cocaine and kola nuts to give the drink its stimulative effect.

 

However, many experts have speculated that this shouldn’t be taken as a bluff as the South African has a notoriety for buying things he has joked about.

He had made a joke in 2017 about acquiring Twitter in 2017  in a conversation on the platform with comedian Dave Smith.

Twitter on Monday struck a deal  with the 50 -year-old  to buy the company for $44 billion, capping a saga complete with hostile takeover threats before delivering him personal control

Musk had cited reasons of trust and free speech as a motivational factors for the takeover.

“Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” Musk said in a statement released by Twitter.

“I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots and authenticating all humans.”

The publicly traded firm will now become a private company owned by Musk, who negotiated a purchase price of $54.20 per share.

Coca-Cola Acquires BodyArmor Sports Drink For $5.6 bn

n this file photo taken on May 01, 2016, a Coca-Cola logo at a restaurant in Washington, DC.

 

 

Coca-Cola announced Monday that it will acquire full ownership of sports drinks company BodyArmor for $5.6 billion.

The beverage giant bought 15 percent of BodyArmor in 2018 and will continue to operate the firm as a separate business in North America, according to a statement.

The company was partly owned by late basketball great Kobe Bryant, who became a major shareholder in 2013.

“BodyArmor has been a great addition to the system lineup over the last three years, and the company has driven continuous innovation in hydration and health-and-wellness products,” said Alfredo Rivera, president of Coca-Cola’s North American operating unit.

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BodyArmor is currently the second-biggest sports drink company with more than $1.4 billion in retail sales, the statement said.

The company’s co-founder and chairman Mike Repole and president Brent Hastie will stay on at the brand, which is looking at “explosive consumer demand” for premium sports drinks.

In a tribute to the athlete and shareholder who died in a 2020 helicopter crash, Repole said, “If it wasn’t for Kobe Bryant’s vision and belief, BodyArmor would not have been able to achieve the success we had. I couldn’t be more excited to become part of the Coca-Cola family and set our sights on the future.”

Coca-Cola, Walmart To Cut Plastic Pollution In Oceans

Seagulls search for food near a sewage discharge area next to piles of plastic bottles and gallons washed away by the water on the seaside of Ouzai, south of Beirut. JOSEPH EID / AFP

 

Coca-Cola, Walmart and other big multinationals pledged on Thursday to help reduce plastic pollution in the world’s oceans in support of a campaign by five of the G7 industrialized nations.

Britain, Canada, France, Germany and Italy, along with the European Union, signed the Ocean Plastics Charter at a leaders’ summit in Canada’s Charlevoix region in June.

The United States and Japan abstained but non-G7 nations Norway and Jamaica are also backing the plan to ensure 100 per cent of plastics are recyclable by 2030.

The nations aim to develop more viable alternatives to plastic packaging, to work towards a goal of all plastics being recycled and reused by 2040.

On the second day of a G7 ministerial meeting in Canada’s Atlantic port city of Halifax, Canadian Environment Minister Catherine McKenna announced “a new partnership with businesses” to reduce plastics waste.

Backers include Loblaws, Walmart, Nestle Canada, IKEA, Dow Chemicals, the Coca-Cola Company, BASF Canada and A&W Canada.

Unilever also announced that it was launching a non-profit entity to reduce consumer and business waste, while Volvo upped its target to make 25 per cent of the plastics in its cars recyclable by 2025.

The G7 group of the world’s major economies are also looking to tackle a growing source of marine pollution: lost fishing nets and gear, which account for 70 per cent of plastic waste floating on the surface of the sea, Canada’s Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said.

About 640,000 tonnes (tons) of nets and other fishing gear are discarded in the oceans each year, killing an estimated 136,000 seals, dolphins, sea lions, turtles, small whales and other seabirds, according to the World Animal Protection group.

“This is a really big problem,” Wilkinson told AFP from the Halifax talks.

“There is a consensus among G7 countries that this is a very important issue… and there is a clear commitment to addressing it,” he said.

According to the United Nations environment agency, 70 per cent of the large plastic waste that floats on the seas comes from fishing.

Josey Kitson, executive director of World Animal Protection, called the plastic debris “death traps” for many seabirds, fish and marine mammals, but expressed hope that the G7 will address the problem.

Wilkinson said G7 and other governments represented at the Halifax meeting are exploring fixes such as incentives for fishers to reuse gear and dispose of ageing nets properly.

The aim is “to actually clean it up (but also) not discharge it in the first place,” he said.

The G7 is also looking at ways of tracking discarded gear back to vessels in order to identify polluters.

Although no timetable has been set, the G7 ministers have agreed to “discuss this issue again” at the Blue Economy Conference in Nairobi in November, Wilkinson said.

AFP

Coca-Cola To Buy Coffee Chain Costa For £3.9bn

Credit: Bloomberg

 

Coca-Cola is to buy Costa coffee from leisure group Whitbread in a deal that values the UK high-street chain at £3.9bn including debt.

James Quincey, Coca-Cola president and chief executive said that Costa would give the company, “new capabilities and expertise in coffee and our system can create opportunities to grow the Costa brand worldwide”.

“Hot beverages is one of the few remaining segments of the total beverage landscape where Coca-Cola does not have a global brand. Costa gives us access to this market through a strong coffee platform.”

Whitbread had previously announced it would spin off Costa from the rest of its business, which is focused on the faster-growing Premier Inn hotel brand, after coming under pressure from activist investors.

A “significant majority” of the net cash proceeds of around £3.8bn from the deal will be returned to shareholders, Whitbread said.

AFP

Court Orders NAFDAC To Warn Against Drinking Fanta, Sprite With Vitamin C

Man Arraigned For Alleged Assault And Public FightA Lagos High Court sitting in the Igbosere area of Lagos Island, has ordered the National Agency For Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to order the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) PLC, to put a written warning on Fanta and Sprite bottles stating that both soft drinks are poisonous, when consumed along with Vitamin C.

The court also held that NAFDAC failed Nigerians by declaring, as fit for human consumption, products discovered by tests in the United Kingdom as turning poisonous when mixed with Ascorbic Acid (popularly known as Vitamin C).

In the judgment given by Justice Adedayo Oyebanji, the court awarded a cost of 2million Naira against NAFDAC.

The court judgment was given in a suit filed by a Lagos-based businessman, Dr. Emmanuel Fijabi Adebo, and his company, Fijabi Adebo Holdings Limited, against NBC PLC and NAFDAC.

Mr. Adebo, had in the suit, urged the court to declare that NBC was negligent to its consumers by bottling Fanta and Sprite with excessive levels of benzoic acid and sunset additives.

The businessman also urged the court to order NAFDAC to carry out routine laboratory tests on all the soft drinks and related products NBC bottles to ensure their safety for consumption.

In documents before the court, it was alleged that in March 2007, Fijabi Adebo Holdings Company bought large quantities of Coca-Cola, Fanta Orange, Sprite, Fanta Lemon, Fanta Pineapple and soda water from NBC for export and subsequent retail in the United Kingdom.

But when the consignment arrived the United Kingdom, health authorities in that country, precisely the Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council’s Trading Standard’s Department of Environment and Economy Directorate, raised fundamental health issues on the contents and composition of Fanta and Sprite.

Findings by the United Kingdom Health Authorities were also corroborated by other agencies in European Union countries, which found the products to contain excessive levels of sunset yellow and benzoic acid, which are known to be carcinogenic.

On account of the irregularities and carcinogenic substances present in the drinks, Mr. Adebo and his company said they could not sell the Fanta and Sprite, this caused huge losses for the company, as the products were seized and destroyed by the United Kingdom Health Authorities.

The claimants equally alleged that NAFDAC did not carry out requisite tests to determine the safety of the drinks for human consumption.

In its response filed before the court by Mr. Tunde Busari, NBC admitted supplying the products, but contended that they are meant for local distribution and consumption, as it does not produce for export.

The company also denied that it was negligent, as it has stringent quality control procedures to ensure that its products are safe for end-user consumption.

NBC also rejected the allegation that the damages claimed by the businessman and his firm were caused by negligence or any fault on its part.

It argued that the levels of the chemical components in its soft drinks are safe for consumption in Nigeria and that the claimants are not entitled to the recovery of damages arising from their illegal exportation of products meant for local distribution.

NAFDAC on its part did not file any defense.

In her judgment, Justice Oyebanji said he was in absolute agreement with the claimants that soft drinks manufactured by Nigeria Bottling Company ought to be fit for human consumption irrespective of whether they were to be consumed locally or exported.

He also held that NAFDAC has been grossly irresponsible in its regulatory duties to the consumers of Fanta and Sprite manufactured by Nigeria Bottling Company.

The court then ordered, “That NAFDAC shall forthwith mandate Nigeria Bottling Company to, within 90 days, include on all the bottles of Fanta and Sprite soft drinks manufactured by the company, a written warning that the content of the said bottles of Fanta and Sprite soft drinks cannot be taken with Vitamin C as same becomes poisonous if taken with Vitamin C.

SERAP, Others Petition Coca-Cola CEO Over Alleged Consumer Rights Abuses

Coca-colaSix Nigerian human rights, non-governmental and civil society organizations have sent an open letter to the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of The Coca-Cola Company, Mr Muhtar Kent, over alleged consumer rights abuses by Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited.

The groups are: Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP); Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre (WARDC); Women Empowerment and Legal Aid Initiative (WELA); Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre); Partnership for Justice (PJ), and Human Rights Advancement, Development and Advocacy Centre (HURIDAC)

In the letter dated December 9, 2014, and signed on behalf of the groups by SERAP Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, the groups expressed “serious concerns about the continuing refusal by Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited to comply with the recommendations by the Consumer Protection Council of Nigeria (CPC),” and urged Kent to use his good offices and leadership “to prevail on the Company to respect due process and international standards in its operations and manufacturing process.”

According to the groups, “The failure by Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited to effectively comply with Nigerian laws and regulations is illustrated by the Company’s refusal to subject their manufacturing process to inspection by appropriate authorities, in particular the CPC; failure to establish a Shelf Life Policy for their products in the country which clearly would help to facilitate the removal of expired products from the market; and failure to address health and safety implications of its operations and practices.”

Other instances listed by the groups are: “failure to put in place appropriate grievance resolution policy that can address compensation for injuries, or compensation in instances where replacement will be inadequate; failure to review the Company’s supply chain management to include retailers in order to minimise the distribution of defective, non-conforming or expired products; and failure to bring the Company’s traceability policy in line with international standards by only relying on information as to the place of purchase to trace their products.”

The groups also said that, “the lack of due diligence clearly has implications for the enjoyment of consumer and human rights. The lack of accountability and impunity by Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited is not only unethical but also inconsistent with international standardCoca-Cola s such as the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations Protect, Respect and Remedy Framework.

“The Guiding Principles were endorsed by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2011. The Principles require that Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited show genuine commitment to product safety and quality in Nigeria, and to respect and accept the recommendations of appropriate authorities on the compliance of its plants and operations with international standards, as the parent company does in developed economies,” the groups added.

According to the groups, “Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited is also required to ensure that its activities do not directly or indirectly cause consumer rights abuses, and to provide effective remedies to victims in cases of abuses of consumer rights. The Company must seek to prevent or mitigate adverse consumer rights impacts that are directly linked to their operations, products or services by their business relationships, even if they have not contributed to those impacts.”

“The responsibility of Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited to respect consumer rights is a global standard of expected conduct for all business enterprises wherever they operate. It exists over and above compliance with national laws and regulations protecting human rights. We contend that addressing adverse consumer rights impacts in its operations and practices requires taking adequate measures for their prevention, mitigation and, where appropriate, remediation,” the groups also argued.

Court Declines FG’s Request To Order Arrest Of Coca-Cola Chiefs

EkitiA request made by the Nigerian Government to a Federal High Court in Abuja for an order to arrest two Chief Executive Officers of the Coca-cola Nigeria and the Nigerian Bottling Company in order to put them on trial for criminal matters has been declined by the court .

The presiding judge, Justice Elvis Chukwu, however, granted the application for a substituted service on the accused persons for them to appear in court at the next adjourned date.

The two accused persons are  Chief Adeola Adetunji and Mr Ben Langat, the Managing Directors of Coca-Cola Nigeria LTD and Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) respectively.

Former Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Chief Bayo Ojo moved the motion for the arrest of the two accused persons following their absence in court to answer criminal charges on issues bordering on alleged quality of their products.

The former minister, who is billed to prosecute the two accused persons along with their companies on behalf of Federal Government, told Justice Elvis Chukwu that the absence of the two men was a disobedience and disrespect for court.

He informed the court that Coca-cola Nigeria and the Nigerian Bottling Companies have been served with criminal charges while their Chief Executives were allegedly evading service. He then applied for substituted service on the accused persons in order to compel their attendance in court.

The judge adjourned the matter till Monday, November 10, for the accused persons to be served with criminal charges that would be pasted in their offices or company premises.

Meanwhile, the accused have also filed a preliminary objection against their trial and the appearance of Mister Bayo Ojo as prosecution.

The Attorney General of the Federation, Mr Mohammed Adoke, had last week filed a one-count charge against NBC and its Managing Director and a two-count charge against Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited and its Chief Executive for  violation of product quality standard under the consumer protection council act