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Coke Is Winning the War

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Essay title: Coke Is Winning the War

The question of who won the hundred-year war can be measured against market share and the company’s ability to dominate the value chain. We would argue that Coke is clearly victorious given its dominant global market share, and dominance of the value chain to help it sustain a competitive advantage.

Coke’s dominant global market share is clearly evident on a number of fronts. By 1998 Coke controlled a 51% share of the worldwide market compared to Pepsi’s 28%.

Perhaps even more impressive is the innovation with which Coke delivers its products. Having conceded “new Coke” was a tactical error; Coke successfully re-established a new brand from an existing brand with Coca Cola Classic. Just as unimpressive, not only was Pepsi unable to capitalize on Coke’s error, they were unable to capitalize on their venture in the fast food restaurant business. Even worse, they lost business to Coke (Wendy’s & Burger King) by entering the restaurant business.

Just as extraordinary is Coke’s track record internationally. In Venezuela, Pepsi was outselling Coke by a margin of 4 to 1. Yet overnight, the competitive landscape of the market changed as Pepsi’s long time bottler switched to Coke. Pepsi was forced to find another partner and substantially increase their investment in retail distribution. Pepsi undertook a significant undertaking in order to regain a fraction of their previously held market share. By the end of 1998, Pepsi held a 29% market share in Venezuela. In Russia, Germany, China, Latin America and the Middle East, Coke continued to

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