Coca-Cola Energy gets green light from arbitrators in Monster dispute

By Rachel Arthur contact

- Last updated on GMT

Coca-Cola Energy gets green light from arbitrator in Monster dispute

Related tags: Coca-cola, Monster energy

An arbitration tribunal has ruled that Coca-Cola can continue to sell its new Coca-Cola Energy drink, ending a dispute with Monster over the conditions of their partnership.

The dispute related to a 2015 agreement between Monster Beverage Corporation and The Coca-Cola Company, which set out conditions for energy products to be launched under Monster and non-energy products under Coca-Cola.

Monster had argued the launch of Coca-Cola Energy infringed this agreement, while Coca-Cola said the companies' agreement had exceptions that allowed the move.

An arbitration tribunal of the American Arbitration Association has ruled in favor of Coca-Cola, saying that Coca-Cola Energy falls under an exception to the non-compete provision because it is positioned under the Coca-Cola brand.

Coca-Cola Energy roll-out can continue

Coca-Cola and Monster entered into a long-term partnership in 2015, where Coca-Cola gained a minority ownership interest in Monster and became Monster’s preferred global distribution partner. Coca-Cola transferred ownership of its energy business to Monster; while gaining Monster’s non-energy business.

Coca-Cola Energy​ - the first energy drink to be released under the Coca-Cola brand - was launched in April in Ireland and the UK in both sugar and no sugar variants. The drink contains caffeine from naturally-derived sources, guarana extracts and B vitamins, and is free from taurine. It has since been rolled out to other markets such as Australia.

Coca-Cola and Monster mutually agreed to submit their dispute​ to arbitration in October 2018, with the arbitrators now ruling that Coca-Cola can continue to sell and distribute Coca-Cola Energy, including in markets where it has already been launched as well as in additional markets globally.

A joint statement from Coca-Cola and Monster says: The companies respect the arbitrators’ decision and appreciate that the dispute was resolved amicably.

"While there was a disagreement between Coca-Cola and Monster over contractual language, the companies value their relationship and look forward to their continued partnership.”

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