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Coca-Cola increases profits strongly - sugar-free soft drinks in demand


Coca-Cola continues to benefit from turn to less sugary beverages. Year-on-year, third-quarter profits rose 30 percent to nearly $1.9 billion (€1.7 billion), according to the U.S. beverage giant in Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesday. The Pepsi rival recorded high demand for its "Coca-Cola Zero Sugar" and for low-sugar or sugar-free versions of the classics Fanta and Sprite.

Coca-Cola also scored with other calorie-reduced offerings such as mineral waters and sports drinks. In addition, the balance sheet again benefited from cost savings and price increases.

On a comparable basis, Coca-Cola earned 58 cents per share, exceeding Wall Street's expectations. The figures were well received by investors, with the share price initially rising by a good one percent before the stock exchange trading. The sale of bottling plants depressed sales by nine percent to just under 8.3 billion dollars. However, adjusted for special effects, revenues increased by six percent.

CEO James Quincey has been turning the group upside down since he took office last year. In the summer he had announced that he would take over the British café chain Costa for 5.1 billion dollars./mne/hbr/DP/nas (dpa) 

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