On Jan. 15, Birmingham-based Pepsi bottler Buffalo Rock sued PepsiCo for breach of contract, alleging the franchisor has failed to stop the transshipping of unauthorized products such as Pepsi-Cola and Mtn Dew into Buffalo Rock’s exclusive territory. Buffalo Rock’s franchise rights cover portions of Alabama, West Georgia and Florida. The lawsuit asks for at least $1 million in actual damages, plus more for punitive damages. PepsiCo’s company-owned bottler, Pepsi Beverages Co., also is named.
BD held its annual Future Smarts conference on Dec. 7 in New York City. The program focused on the implications of massive changes this year to the North American non-alcoholic beverages landscape. New leaders have taken over all three of the largest soft drink makers -- Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Keurig Dr Pepper -- since 2017. Acquisitions of Dr Pepper Snapple by Keurig Green Mountain, Costa Coffee by Coke and SodaStream by PepsiCo have all signaled a more aggressive approach to portfolio transformation. Meanwhile