Innocent smoothies sells (part of) its soul to Coca-Cola

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Innocent smoothies which were part funded by Branson are to sell a minority stake in thier business to soft drink giant and type company Coca-Cola.

The deal is said to be around the £30m mark and is to fuel further expansion and branding into mainland Europe.

Concerned that the cash investment from Coca – Cola may effect their current cult following, in a statement

“We’re excited by this minority investment as it enables us to do more of what we are here to do – get natural, healthy products to as many people as possible,” Richard Reed said.

“All the money is coming into the business to fund our European expansion and the founders will continue to lead and run the company.

“We will be the same people, in the same offices, making the same products in the same way.”

“Every promise that Innocent has made – about making only natural healthy products, pioneering the use of better, socially and environmentally aware ingredients, packaging and production techniques, donating money to charity and having a point of view on the world – will remain

We have seen similar deals like this take place recently

Pret A Manger, which claims to avoid additives and tries to buy organic, sold a third of its business to McDonald’s in 2001.

Green & Black’s, the organic and fair trade chocolate and ice-cream maker, was bought by Cadbury Schweppes in 2005.

So why is it these niche company’s have to accept money from the big boys and more importantly the boy boys that are doing the complete opposite to what they believe it? Put simply money talks, It is all well and good having principles but if it doesn’t fuel your business then it needs to come from somewhere.

Why would Coca-Cola want to do this deal? – well times are changing and people are more health minded so its really a matter of if you can’t beat them – Join them !!

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