Happy birthday Coca Cola – 118 years old today!


Active member
In 1886 A new fizzy drink is launched by graduate chemist John S Pemberton in Atlanta, Georgia. Decribed as an "Esteemed Brain Tonic and Intellectual Beverage", it is now better known as Coca-Cola. First drinks go on sale at 5c a glass. Average turnover is around 9 glasses of Cola a day.

Since then the Coca Cola company has moved on a bit to produce over 10 billion gallons of syrup a year.

Unfortunately for Pemberton he was an inventor rather than businessman and he sold the business to Atlanta businessman Asa Griggs Candler for around $2300.

Candler took the bull by the horns and turned a quaint little business into some thing serious. Still selling Syrup, Candler was unimpressed when Joseph Biedenharn sent him a bottled version of the drink. Suitability unimpressed he gave away the exclusive rights to bottle it in 1899 for $1.

In 1900 there were only two bottlers of Coca-cola by 1920 there would be 1000.

In 1923, five years after the company was purchased from Candler, Woodruff became chairman he would spend 60 years as company leader introducing the product to the world.

In 1985 Coca-cola became the first soft drink ever in space!!

Coca-cola has such wide appeal now that every 10 seconds 126,000 people choose to reach out and for one of the company’s brands.

Since Candler bought the business for $2300 in 1889 is has grown appreciable in value. It is now capitalised at $119.3b, quite an investment!! Last year it turned over $21b, Produced a net income of $4.35b and returned nearly half that to shareholders in the form of a dividend.

So I suppose the question is, what will the business be worth in 2122? What with exclusive distribution rights on Mars, the Moon and the near solar system somewhat more than $119.3b I would guess? Now where’s that spreadsheet?


Experienced member
It seems ludicrous that a company simply selling fizzy tooth rot could be worth so much.

Theres no accounting for taste.




Senior member
and I love your water..its' delicious..I can't wait to get out of hospital so that I can start drinking it again... ;)
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