James Quincey To Succeed Muhtar Kent As Coca-Cola Chief Executive

Posted On: 12/14/2016

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TAGS: Muhtar Kent, Coke leadership, James Quincey, Coca-Cola Co., vending

ATLANTA -- Coca-Cola Co. chief executive Muhtar Kent will be succeeded by current chief operating officer James Quincey, effective May 1. Kent, 64, has served as Coke's chief executive since 2008 and will continue as chairman of the board, a position he's held since 2009.

Berkshire Hathaway Inc.'s Warren Buffet, who owns 400 million shares of Coca-Cola stock, valued at $16.9 billion, called the move a "smart investment" in the beverage giant's future.

Quincey, 51, is credited with reducing the serving size of Coca Cola products, as well as the amount of sugar added to them. He joined Coke's Latin American group in 1996 and moved up through the ranks. He led the Europe and Mexico divisions before advancing to president and chief operating officer in August 2015. Earlier this year, he put in place a new international operating structure and leadership team to drive efficiency at the local levels.

Muhtar Kent, Coke, James Quincey
PHOTO: James Quincey (l.) and Muhtar Kent shake hands at a Coca-Cola employee town hall in Atlanta on Dec. 9. Quincey will succeed Kent as CEO in May 2017.