Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) is one of the largest bottlers and distributors of ready-to-drink beverages in Indonesia and PNG, but it’s focused more on impact than sales. With its 8,000-plus employees, the beverage powerhouse operates its best-in-class manufacturing and logistic infrastructure to deliver happiness every day for its consumers, customers, partners, communities and shareholders.
One way it does this is by taking a ‘glocal’ approach, personalising the local offering while taking advantage of parent The Coca-Cola Company’s wealth of expertise. “Our businesses are managed and run locally. You have to be local at heart,” former President Director Kadir Gunduz explains. “However, our international presence brings best practices from other markets. This is especially helpful in adapting technology and tried-and-tested designs and strategies, and making them work with locally minded modifications.”
Innovation and technology have always been of great importance, and are key drivers for growth, aiding in the production of new beverage options. “Innovation is so important to our company that it is embedded into the core of our culture and our strategy. It isn’t narrowly defined only to products and services. We also need to continually innovate ourselves as an organisation, especially at times like this, to navigate a very uncertain future,” Kadir says.
“The pandemic has created changes in shopper behaviour and digital disruption in how we go to market. It’s shown us that post-pandemic, there will be structural changes to the market, which will require innovative and hybrid models to cater to the needs of our customers.”
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kadir says the company reviewed its processes, making necessary adjustments to ensure the protection of its people while continuing to serve its customers and keep the business afloat.
“We were in a fortunate position, since we had just undertaken a business transformation program over the past few years, which had reset our route to market, modernised our supply chain and greatly improved the capability of our people. So, in terms of business structure, the changes put in place as a result of the pandemic were minimal,” he reveals.
However, it was clear that from a strategy point of view, changes were required to accommodate the increased reliance on digital and ecommerce. “We undertook an agile approach to the situation, acting quickly, reviewing outcomes and course-correcting where required,” Kadir explains. “The changes have helped us survive and grow our market share in the current conditions, and set us up to emerge stronger as we move towards a post-pandemic environment.”
CCEP has been continuously growing in Indonesia or committed to growing its business there, recognising that it wouldn’t be where it is today without the support of its partners – all 1,300-plus of them.
“The pandemic impacted each of us, but through our strong relationships, built on mutual trust that has developed over a long period of time, we have been able to successfully navigate together through this period,” he says.
“Innovation is so important to our company that it is embedded into the core of our culture and our strategy. It isn’t narrowly defined only to products and services.”
The company has used the time to explore opportunities with some of its partners. Collaboration with a key sugar supplier resulted in a combined US$20 million investment, which has delivered a liquid sugar production capability unlocking efficiencies and cost savings via reduced wastage.
“We also announced in May 2020 that we had entered into a Heads of Agreement with our long-term packaging partner to build a state-of-the-art bottle-to-bottle-grade PET recycling facility in Indonesia,” Kadir points out. “The facility will begin operating in 2022, marking a significant step towards CCEP becoming self-sustaining in the plastic materials we use. It is also a great example of where a good collaboration and a real partnership can take you.”
Sustainability is a priority focus for Coca-Cola, and not just to boost the brand’s image. “The outcomes of the sustainability programs we’ve put in place certainly enhance our corporate brand, not only within government and business circles, but also within the community, and the outcomes can also deliver financial benefits,” Kadir concedes.
“However, we strive to focus on those areas where we can make a difference, including in sustainable packaging, water stewardship, energy management and caring for nature, simply because it is the right thing to do for our future. We know that there’s a lot more to be done, but we’re committed to building a better environment and future for the next generation.”
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