August 17, 2010 / 8:45 PM / 9 years ago

Coca-Cola's Douglas to run marketing, brand growth

* Post-bottler acquisition structure outlined in memo

* Coke North America to run marketing, franchise relations

* New unit under Cahillane to handle sales, pricing

CHICAGO, Aug 17 (Reuters) - Coca-Cola Co (KO.N) North America President Sandy Douglas will run marketing and brand growth of the combined North American business when the soft-drink maker closes its acquisition of bottler Coke Enterprises’ CCE.N assets in the region later this year, according to a Coke internal memo obtained by Reuters.

Douglas will also be in charge of emerging brands, manageabout 70 U.S. bottlers, and lead research and development, according to Coke.

A unit called Coca-Cola Refreshments, run by Coke Enterprises’ North America head Steve Cahillane, will handle sales, pricing and trade, customer care and other activities. The restructuring was first reported by Beverage Digest.

Coke’s deal, announced in February and expected to close in October, has Coke relinquishing its 34 percent, $3.2 billion stake in CCE and assuming $8.9 billion in debt.

CCE will retain its European operations and buy Coke’s Norway and Sweden bottling.

Coke announced its plan to buy CCE’s North America business following a similar deal between rival PepsiCo PEP.N and two of its largest bottlers.

Coke’s shares closed 24 cents higher, up 0.4 percent, at $56.12 on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Emily Stephenson; Editing by Gary Hill)

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