Citizen Coke: the Making of Coca Cola Capitalism
Coca Cola is by far one of the most successful companies in the world. It is also one of the most famous brands that is easy recognizable in the most remote corners of the planet. It is sold everywhere and it has become a real symbol of the American mode of life and of capitalism in a broad meaning of this word. The story of Coca Cola is often represented as an amazing story of success and that is why it remains in the focus of various researches. People are eager to know how a usual patent medicine became one of the most successful brands in the human history and a huge profit-generating business.
In his book Citizen Coke: the Making of Coca Cola Capitalism Bartow J. Elmore tries to answer this question and offers his own approach to the history of success. According to Elmore behind a nice fairy tale of unmatched achievements stand an unmatched appetite for natural resources and a well-planned strategy of acquiring these resources almost for nothing. In addition, Coca Cola can serve as a brilliant example of an outsourcing strategy that is based on getting huge profits while serving as a third-party distributor of goods that were produced by others. Coca Cola has become the embodiment of a special type of capitalism. This capitalism is based on other industries’ excesses. This capitalism is profit oriented but hides under the mask of responsible citizenship. Still, it is impossible to disagree with the main thesis of the book which states that in the 21st century the Coca Cola capitalism will not be able to sustain its existence because of the dramatic scarcity of natural resources.
Citizen Coke is a very special work because it critically analyzes the history of one of the leaders of the global economy. While telling the story of Coke’s development starting from 1886, the author managed to achieve several other goals. The first goal was disclosing the nature of the Coca Cola capitalism that differs greatly from other models of big business. The second goal was to demonstrate the connection between environment and business. The third goal was to define future perspectives of the economic systems based and heavy dependent on natural resources in conditions of global scarcity. According to Elmore it is not right to apply simple answers to the success of Coca Cola. There were several important factors that contributed to this success. The first component was an effective advertising. As the author points out the company had “eye-catching advertisements that persuaded people to buy its nonessential products” (Elmore 8).
From the very beginning of its development the company invested a lot of money in advertising. It was explained by the fact that instead of building big plants or buying plantations, the company concentrated on buying basements with water and light privileges. As a result, it had huge advertising budgets. The next component which turned out far more important than all …