Coca-Cola is adding some fizz to its line of non-soda offerings, acquiring the maker of Glacéau VitaminWater today in its biggest purchase ever. The $4.1 billion purchase of Energy Brands will give Coke a strong foothold in the market for non-carbonated products and help it close the gap with archrival Pepsi.
Glacéau commands nearly one-third of the "enhanced" water market with its candy-colored VitaminWater and electrolyte-filled SmartWater. That makes it attractive to Coke, which has struggled to expand beyond the soda products that account for 80% of its sales. As soda loses market share, Coke has sought a product to help it stay current. One analyst said simply: "Coke needs Glacéau.''