Coca-Cola To Give FTC More Time On Bottler Deal

ATLANTA (AP) -- The Coca-Cola Co. said Friday said it withdrew and will refile forms with the Federal Trade Commission in order to give the agency more time to review its proposed $3.4 billion acquisition of its largest bottler, Coca-Cola Enterprises.

The beverage company said it will do the same thing with regulatory agencies in Canada.

Coca-Cola originally filed its required notifications with the FTC and Canadian authorities on June 30.

After discussion with the agencies, it said it will refile the documents on Monday. After the notification and report forms are filed, the FTC has a 30-day period to determine if they need more information or if they will close the investigation.

Coca-Cola said in a statement it "remains committed to working cooperatively with the FTC and Canadian competition authorities."

The company, based in Atlanta, said it continues to expect the deal will close in the fourth quarter.

Coca-Cola said in February that it would buy the North American operations of Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc., its biggest bottler, for $3.4 billion. It would also assume $8.88 billion in debt.

The deal followed PepsiCo's agreement with two of its largest bottlers, Pepsi Bottling Group and PepsiAmericas, to control 80 percent of domestic distribution for $7.8 billion.

Coca-Cola shares fell 6 cents to $54.93 in midday trading. Coca-Cola Enterprises shares fell 5 cents to $28.72.

More in Supply Chain