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RFM says it completed Cosmos soft drink sale


Philippine conglomerate RFM Corporation on Thursday completed the sale of soft drink unit Cosmos Bottling Corp to a San Miguel Corp joint venture through a series of transactions in the share market, an RFM spokesman said.

San Miguel subsidiary, Coca Cola Bottlers Philippines, and joint venture partner Coca Cola Co. (NYSE:KO - news), agreed in October to acquire Cosmos from its parent RFM in a deal that put an enterpirse value of 14 billion pesos (272 million) on the unit.

RFM had an 83 percent stake in Cosmos while the rest of the shares are held by minority shareholders.

The acquisition, the biggest corporate takeover in the country in 2001, gives Coca Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc (CCBPI) control of about 90 percent of the estimated $1 billion a year soft drinks market, up from 60-65 percent.

Rival PepsiCo Inc, which lost out in the bidding for Cosmos, has about 10 percent of the Philippine market.

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