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Coca-Cola signs 10-year contract with the University of Alabama

CW/ Scarlet VanMeter

CW/ Scarlet VanMeter

CW/ Scarlet VanMeter

Rylie Curry, Staff Writer

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The University of Alabama and The Coca-Cola Co. signed a ten-year contract in July, which made Coca-Cola the exclusive beverage provider at the University. It is the first time in two decades that a single beverage provider will work for both campus and athletics programs.

For $2 million a year for ten years, Coca-Cola will be the exclusive beverage provider at the University. In addition, students will find new vending machines on campus, new beverage options at dining halls and more opportunities to purchase Coca-Cola products on campus. The new vending machines will have a variety of payment options, including credit and debit cards, Action Cards and cash.

“We’ve added over 300 pieces of vending, 40 pieces of fountain equipment, added new products at dining halls, and added coolers to different areas throughout campus,” said Kevin Horton, sales center manager at Coca-Cola Bottling Co.

In addition to beverages, Coca-Cola will also be providing students with new academic and career opportunities. A student ambassador was hired at the University to connect with other students and inform them of new opportunities through Coca-Cola. In addition, Coca-Cola will also offer a summer internship, a speaker series on campus and an annual scholarship.

Tyrus McCloud, a sophomore majoring in mechanical engineering, said he was excited about the new opportunities offered to students.

“It’s always good to provide extra services and opportunities for students,” McCloud said. “I’d choose Coke over Pepsi every time if it meant someone was benefitting from my purchase.”

Not only does the new deal work with the University, but it can benefit the Tuscaloosa community as well. Once they were awarded the contract, Coca-Cola created five new job titles at the University.

Andy Britton, marketing asset manager at Coca-Cola, said the new jobs were created in order to provide the highest level of service to the University.

“We wanted to ensure the relationship grows and continues to grow,” Britton said.

Linda Sewell, corporate director of community relations and communications at Coca-Cola, said Coca-Cola wanted to be more than just a customer to the University, but a partner.

“Coca-Cola is an Alabama-based company founded in Birmingham,” Sewell said. “We’re now a world class organization and have a tradition and legacy here of being committed to education.”

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Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894
Coca-Cola signs 10-year contract with the University of Alabama