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Coca-Cola reports revenue growth in Q4 and FY23 results

The Coca-Cola Company has published its fourth quarter and full year 2023 results, reporting 7% net revenue growth for Q4 and 6% for the FY. For the quarter, the beverage giant reported net revenues of $10.8 billion. Organic revenues grew 12%, driven by 9% growth in price/mix and 3% growth in concentrate sales. Net revenues increased to $45.8 billion for the full year and organic revenues grew 12%, driven by 10% growth in price/mix and 2% growth in concentrate sales. Operating margin for the quarter was 21.0% compared with 20.5% in the previous year, while comparable operating margin was 23.1% versus 22.7% in the prior year. For the full year, operating margin was 24.7% versus 25.4% in 2022, while comparable operating margin was 29.1% versus 28.7% in the prior year. Both within the quarter and full year, Coca-Cola said comparable operating margin expansion was driven mainly by strong topline growth, partially offset by an increase in marketing investments as well as currency headwinds. Earnings per share (EPS) declined 2% to $0.46 for the quarter, while comparable EPS grew 10% to $0.49. For the full year, EPS grew 13% to $2.47, and comparable EPS grew 8% to $2.69. Cash flow from operations was $11.6 billion for the full year, an increase of $581 million on the prior year. Global unit case volume grew 2% for the quarter, with growth in Mexico and Germany offset by declines in the US and Chile. Developing and emerging markets grew 4%, driven by growth in Brazil and India. Unit case volume for the full year grew 2%, with 1% growth in developed markets driven by Mexico and Germany. Developing and emerging markets grew 2%, driven by growth in India and Brazil, partially offset by the suspension of business in Russia in 2022. Sparkling soft drinks grew 2% for both the quarter and the full year, primarily driven by growth in Latin America and Asia Pacific. Juice, value-added dairy and plant-based beverages grew 6% for the quarter and 2% for the full year. Water, sports, coffee and tea was even for the quarter and grew 1% for the full year. In its 2024 outlook, the company said it expects to deliver organic revenue growth of 6 to 7%. It projects comparable currency-neutral EPS growth of 8% to 10% and comparable EPS growth of 4% to 5%, versus $2.69 in 2023. The company boosted its marketing investment in 2023 with the successful launch of an AI-based campaign and interactive local initiatives, such as the Coca-Cola Caravan Truck Tour, which travelled through nearly 60 countries, meeting over 16 million consumers. Its holiday campaign experiences contributed to the growth of Trademark Coca-Cola volume and value share gains as well as unit case volume and transaction growth for both the quarter and full year. Since the beginning of 2023, the company completed the refranchising of company-owned bottling operations in Vietnam to a subsidiary of Swire Pacific. It also completed the sale of its stake in the bottler in Pakistan to Coca-Cola İçecek and of its stake in the bottler in Indonesia to Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP). More recently, it completed the refranchising of a portion of its company-owned bottling operations in India to existing franchise bottlers and received regulatory approval to sell its bottling operations in the Philippines to CCEP and Aboitiz Equity Ventures, which is expected to close towards the end of February 2024. James Quincey, chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, said: ““During the year, our people and partners rose to meet new challenges, allowing us to excel globally and deliver in a dynamic world”. He added: “As we begin a new year, we’re confident that our all-weather strategy, powerful portfolio and harmonised system will continue to create value for our stakeholders in 2024 and for the long term”.

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