Competitors of Coca-Cola (Coca-Cola Competitor analysis)
This article aims to explore the main competitors of Coca-Cola Company in different markets. The Coca-Cola Company is an American multinational corporation. It offers over 500 brands in more than 200 countries and territories (The Coca-Cola Company, 2022). It is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, the USA.
Who are the competitors of Coca-Cola Company?
One of the most competitive industries in the world is the soft drink industry. With so many choices, customers often find it difficult to select the perfect drink for them. However, Coca-Cola is the undisputed champion in this industry. Not only has it been one of the world’s largest companies since its beginning, but it is also the best-selling non-alcoholic beverage worldwide. However, there are several competitors that challenge it in many markets.
Coca-Cola’s main competitor is PepsiCo, and unsurprisingly, both companies have been dominating the non-alcoholic beverage industry in many countries for a long time. Their operations go beyond the borders of more than 200 countries and territories. Other notable competitors in the global non-alcoholic beverage and bottled water industry are Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Nestle, Red Bull, Monster Beverage Corp, Refreshco, National Beverage, Danone, Asahi Soft Drinks, Kirin, Otsuka Holdings, Unilever Group, and Suntory Beverage & Food Ltd.
Competitors of Coca-Cola in the USA
There are a number of competitors fighting for the market dominance in the US soft drink industry. Coca-Cola is well ahead with nearly 45% market share. Others closely following it are Dr Pepper and PepsiCo (Ridder, 2022).
Soda production industry is worth around $39 billion in the USA. However, apart from the competitive pressure, Cola-Cola and its rivals also need to take note of changes in consumer behavior. Many consumers are turning away from sugary and artificially sweetened beverages. In addition, state and local governments are also pushing for additional taxes on sugary drinks (IBISWORLD, 2021). Therefore, Coca-Cola needs to focus on producing more healthy options for customers which should help it address changing consumer behaviour.
Competitors of Coca-Cola in the global markets
The UK is one of the biggest soft drink markets in the world. A number of players are on the stage, and it is interesting that private label soft drink brands have the highest sales in the country followed by Coca-Cola. PepsiCo is in the 3rd position (Ridder, 2022). Private label brands are owned by retailers or suppliers. They are produced by contracted manufacturers.
Canada has a big soft drink market which is dominated by PepsiCo and Coca Cola. However, popular Canadian brands such as Canada Dry, Crush, Big 8, and Clearly Canadian are also doing well. It should be mentioned that due to public awareness concerning obesity and sugar intake, the appeal of sugary soft drinks has dropped quite a lot in the recent years (Ridder, 2022).
Chinse economy is growing fast and improving the socio-economic conditions of millions of people. Many people now spend a lot on beverages such as fruit juice, mineral water, tea beverages, and other healthy beverages. It is expected that the per capita consumption of carbonated drinks will grow in coming years (IBISWORLD, 2021).
Cola-Cola’s position in China’s soft drink market (including carbonated beverages) is very good. It is well ahead of PepsiCo. Apart from PepsiCo, it also faces challenges from companies such as Kang Shifu, Wahaha, Nong Fu Spring, and C’estbon.
Coca-Cola had a good time in India for a long time; however, not anymore! In addition to PepsiCo’s challenges, it is also facing stiff resistance from a growing number of small yet popular local brands such as Bovonto, Jayanti Cola, Xalta Cola, Sosyo, Ginlim etc.
The Middle East is a unique place to sell soft drinks as there are many restrictions on selling alcoholic drinks. Therefore, many beverage companies are investing heavily in the growth of their brands in this part of the world. The key competitor Coca-Cola faces here is none but PepsiCo. However, other competitors which are doing well as well are Nestle, Suntory Beverage & Food (a subsidiary of Japanese company Suntory Holdings Ltd), and Red Bull.
Soft drink companies are now also focusing on the growing African markets. Countries such as Egypt, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, and Morocco have massive domestic markets for soft drinks. Like many other markets, Coca-Cola is once again challenged by PepsiCo. Other local ones that are coming up strong as well are MoFaya Energy Drink (South Africa), Wilson Lemonade (Nigeria), and Mo Cola (Tanzania).
The Coca-Cola Company is the world’s largest beverage company, but it faces competition from several other international brands. However, as seen from the above that the race for the crown in many countries in the world is often limited to Coca-Cola and PepsiCo. It is also worth mentioning that Nestle is the market leader of the world’s bottled water market.
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Last update: 28 January 2022
IBISWORLD (2021) Soda Production Industry in the US – Market Research Report, available at:
Ridder, R. (2022) Leading soft drink brands ranked by grocery sales value in the United Kingdom (UK) in 2018, available at: https://www.statista.com/statistics/296662/soft-drink-brand-ranking-in-the-united-kingdom-uk-by-grocery-market-value/ (accessed 28 January 2022)
The Coca-Cola Company (2022) Our company, available at: https://www.coca-colacompany.com/our-company (accessed 28 January 2022)
Author: Joe David
Joe David has years of teaching experience both in the UK and abroad. He writes regularly online on a variety of topics. He has a keen interest in business, hospitality, and tourism management. He holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Management Studies and a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing Management.