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Trade Tribunal Rules Coca’s Merger with Ambo Unlawful

The adjudicative tribunal of Trade Competition & Consumer Protection Authority ruled today against East African Bottling, bottler of Coca-Cola, and Ambo Mineral Water in their merger agreement. The Tribunal also fined the duo five percent of their past fiscal year’s turnover.

The Tribunal ruled in favour of prosecutors, who claimed that the two entered into a merger agreement against the nation’s merger proclamation.

Prosecutors claimed that the companies had announced the merger during a summit held in the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA). But the co-defendants denied it.

The Tribunal, however, rationalises that no written ways of the contract are mandatory to prove the existence of such agreement. It ruled against them substantiating that the two companies exchanged employees, used their logo together, shared each other’s sales line and the order given by the top level management of the two companies, thus connoting the merger.

Fikadu Petros, the lawyer of East Africa Bottling, declined from giving any comment on the issue


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