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Nestea announces new flavors, new bottle

BY Jenna Duncan

ATLANTA Nestea is getting a makeover, producer Coca-Cola said Friday. The beverage maker said that it plans to add new flavors and revamp the Nestea brand’s packaging to beat competition in the U.S. tea market.

New Nestea bottles will land in stores this month with bold labels and a slimmer design. Coke said the design change was geared to make the tea stand out from soft drinks. New Nestea flavors, Green Tea Citrus and Diet Green Tea Citrus, are being rolled out with 50 percent more antioxidants than the Nestea green tea currently on the market.

Senior vice president and general manager of coffee and tea for Coca-Cola North, Penny McIntyre, said, “You could sum it up to say we changed pretty well everything that we could to make sure we had the strongest proposition for consumers.”

The take-home sales totals for tea rose 20.5 percent in the U.S. in 2007, reported Beverage Digest newsletter recently. According to the report, Nestea ranked fourth, following competitors Arizona Tea, Lipton and Snapple. Nestea held 8.5 percent of the market.

The new Nestea marketing campaign will get under way during the next few months, Coke said. To promote the new flavors and packaging, Coke will distribute more than 1 million free samples of Nestea.

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Dr Pepper set to split from Cadbury Schweppes

BY Jenna Duncan

PLANO, Texas Dr Pepper plans on declaring independence from its parent company, Cadbury Schweppes, once a buy-back is cemented next week. A new company called Dr Pepper Snapple, which has been in planning stages since March of last year, is slated to emerge from the split.

“By having the core research and development capability at our headquarters, we expect to be able to move more rapidly and reliably from prototype to full commercialization,” the company said in a statement filed Monday with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Company spokesman, Greg Artkop, said that a research facility is currently being built in Plano and should be in operation by this summer.

As soon as the separation is completed, Dr Pepper Snapple will control business for 7UP, Motts juices, Snapple, Sunkist orange and Dr Pepper in Canadian, Caribbean, Mexican and U.S. markets.

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Purple names new national accounts manager

BY Jenna Duncan

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. Purple Beverage Co. today announced that Lou Aceto, former North American national accounts manager for Red Bull, will join the team at Purple as national accounts manager. Aceto will also handle national distribution for Purple, the company said.

At Red Bull, Aceto was responsible for getting the product to convenience stores, drug stores, grocery chains and other retailers around New England and in New York.

Purple founder and chief executive officer, Ted Farnsworth said, “With experience and relationships from individual markets to large retail chains, [Acetoa] will be an invaluable asset to our growing company. His knowledge and expertise expand beyond building strategic relationships, planning and exceeding sales targets to earning customer satisfaction through effective client management and driving successful negotiations.”

Aceto also served at Quaker Oats Co. as key accounts manager, implementing call strategies inside chain and distributor groups. Prior to his work at Quaker, and then Red Bull, he served as an independent distributor for Tropicana Products.

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