Prepare yourself for single-serving, instant Coke pods.
The Coca-Cola Company just bought 10% of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, the maker of the popular Keurig line of single-serving coffee brewing systems, according to a joint statement released by the two companies. The idea is pretty simple: the two are planning to collaborate on a new at home soda machine.
As part of the strategic collaboration, [Green Mountain] will be The Coca-Cola Company’s exclusive partner for the production and sale of The Coca-Cola Company-branded single-serve, pod-based cold beverages.
“With The Coca-Cola Company as a global strategic partner in our multi-brand at-home Keurig Cold beverage system, we believe there is significant opportunity to premiumize and accelerate growth in the cold beverage category by empowering consumers with an innovative, convenient way to freshly prepare their favorite cold beverages at the push of a button,” said Brian P. Kelley, President and CEO of GMCR.
It’s fair to expect that not just Coca-Cola, but also the company’s long list of carbonated drinks, including Sprite and Fanta, could appear in pods too. Perhaps that explains why Green Mountain applied for a trademark on the word “Karbon” mid last year.
Coca-Cola’s move into the world of homemade sodas comes on the heels of falling soda consumption across the US—American soda consumption has fallen in each of the past five years (paywall)—and the rising popularity of at home and artisanal carbonated drinks (even Starbucks is getting in on the trend). Other at-home soda makers are already starting to sweat the newfound competition. SodaStream shares have plunged since the deal was announced.