Coke Denies Takeover Talks with Monster Beverage
Coca-Cola, the world's largest beverage company, on Monday denied media reports it was in talks to buy energy-drink giant Monster Beverage.
"At this time, we are not in discussions to acquire the Monster Beverage Corporation, Coke said in a statement.
"Coca-Cola has a distribution relationship with Monster in many markets, including the United States. Therefore, we are always in contact with Monster to maximize the value of our commercial arrangements," the company said.
"We continue to review the best ways to maximize the value of our relationship."
Citing people familiar with the matter, the Wall Street Journal reported earlier Monday that Coke was in talks to buy Monster, which has a $13 billion market value, as Coke seeks to diversify amid stagnating sales of traditional soft drinks.
Shares of Monster jumped 28 percent on the Journal report, but after the Coke denial, closed 0.8 percent lower at $65.03.
Monster Beverage, known formerly as Hansen Natural Corp., changed its name and its ticker symbol in January.
Based in Corona, California, the company makes Monster Energy brand drinks, Monster Energy Extra Strength Nitrous Technology brand drinks, Peace Tea iced teas, and Hansen's natural juice drinks, among others.
For its fiscal fourth quarter, Monster said net income surged 31.4 percent to $64.5 million.