Equatorial Coca-Cola Bottling Company has reached an agreement with Diana Holding to acquire Atlas Bottling Company

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ECCBC will reinforce its position as a leading anchor bottler in the Coca-Cola system in Africa.

Diana Holding reorganises its portfolio of participations to reinforce its position and accelerate its development in other agro-industrial activities.

Equatorial Coca-Cola Bottling Company (“ECCBC”) has reached an agreement to acquire, through its Moroccan subsidiaries, the northern Moroccan Coca-Cola bottler Atlas Bottling Company (“ABC”) from its majority shareholder, Diana Holding S.A. (“Diana Holding”), and certain minority shareholders.

The acquisition will allow ECCBC to manage its enlarged business across a consolidated beverage platform and serve the Moroccan market more effectively and efficiently, driving value for the Coca-Cola System’s key stakeholders including consumers, customers and suppliers.

ECCBC is the official Coca-Cola bottler in 13 countries in North and West Africa with a proud history dating back over 30 years and is committed to continuing to invest, employ, produce, and distribute locally while maintaining strong commitments to the economic and social well-being of each community it serves.

The transaction is also in line with Diana Holding’s strategy to reinforce its position in other agribusiness activities, reorganise its portfolio of participations, and capitalise on its substantial bottling experience of nearly 50 years to keep developing its know-how in the sectors of plastic packaging and distribution. It also comes after the finalisation, at the end of 2021, of a strategic review of Diana Holding’s portfolio aimed at launching new investments and deploying a new action plan to rationalise its assets, reinforce synergies between its subsidiaries and accelerate its development, including across the African continent.

“As a company headquartered in Morocco, we are deeply committed to the country and the African continent.  We embrace the acquisition of Atlas Bottling Company with optimism and look forward to unlocking opportunities in the Moroccan soft drinks market for the benefit of all stakeholders. We are devoted to continuing to build on Diana Holding’s and ABC’s legacy of service and excellence. We are proud of our role in the Coca-Cola system and this transaction reinforces our position as a leading anchor bottler in Africa.”

Alfonso Bosch, CEO of ECCBC Group

“Starting in 2011 and ending in 2017, Diana Holding made significant investments to renew its industrial infrastructure in the North and Northeastern regions of Morocco. The Group was able to conceive, develop and build in Tangier one of the leading bottling plants for Coca-Cola products in Africa, as evidenced by numerous distinctions received by ABC such as the first prize QSE Award Mena in 2020 or the first prize Africa Excellence Cup in 2021 and 2022. I am proud, in the name of ABC’s executive committee, that Diana Holding and its shareholders could transmit this top-notch industrial unit to ECCBC to focus going forward on a trajectory of developing and extracting value from other high-margin activities”.

Rita Maria Zniber, Chairman and CEO of Diana Holding,

Rothschild & Co acted as sole financial advisor to ECCBC and Latham & Watkins LLP and Bennani & Associés acted as lead legal advisor and Moroccan legal counsel, respectively.

Ascent Capital Partners acted as sole financial advisor to Diana Holding and Asafo & Co acted as sole legal advisor.

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