The largest independent bottler of Coca-Cola products, Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated, plans to open a new call center on W.T. Harris Boulevard this October and add 140 new employees over the next three years.
The call center will also house 160 current employees. Lauren Steele, senior vice president of corporate affairs for the Charlotte-based company, said the company has outgrown its existing space in SouthPark, where it currently employs about 550. The new roughly 70,000 square feet of office space will be at 5020 W. W.T. Harris Boulevard. They will retain their SouthPark headquarters.
“We are gaining a good deal of additional franchise territory. As a result, we are adding staff members,” Steele said. “We need the space.”
Fueling the growth: Coca-Cola Bottling Co. and The Coca-Cola Company signed a letter of intent in May giving the bottling company exclusive distribution rights to new markets in 10 states and the District of Columbia.
Steele said a previous expansion into parts of Kentucky, Tennessee and Indiana caused sales to grow by about 30 percent in the past year.
Steele said The Coca-Cola Company’s increasing reliance on independent bottlers will allow the bottler to double in size between 2014 and 2017, if all announced transactions between the two companies are completed.