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The Coca-Cola Company pledges US$1.1b to Microsoft as part of strategic partnership to drive cloud, GenAI adoption

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Azunta Gaviola

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3 months ago

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Washington, USA – Software development company Microsoft has announced recently that it has joined forces in a five-year strategic partnership with The Coca-Cola Company. This initiative is aimed at aligning Coca-Cola’s core technology strategy across its entire system, facilitating the adoption of leading-edge technology, and driving global innovation and productivity.

As part of the collaboration, Coca-Cola has pledged US$1.1b to leverage the Microsoft Cloud and its generative AI capabilities. This commitment highlights the said company’s ongoing technology transformation, with the Microsoft Cloud serving as its preferred global platform for cloud and AI.

They will also jointly experiment with new technologies, such as Azure OpenAI Service, to create innovative generative AI applications across different business areas. This includes exploring how Copilot for Microsoft 365 could enhance efficiency in the workplace.

Interestingly, Coca-Cola has already migrated all its applications to Microsoft Azure, with the majority of its independent bottling partners also making a move. As an early adopter of artificial intelligence, the company has also been innovating with generative AI for almost a year and has leveraged the Azure OpenAI Service to transform aspects ranging from marketing to manufacturing and supply chain, among others. 

Presently, the company is exploring the use of generative AI-powered digital assistants on Azure OpenAI Service with the goal of helping employees improve customer experiences, streamline operations, foster innovation, gain a competitive advantage, boost efficiency, and uncover new growth opportunities.

Talking about the collaboration, Judson Althoff, executive vice president and chief commercial officer at Microsoft, said, “Through our long-term partnership, we have made significant progress to accelerate system-wide AI transformation across The Coca-Cola Company and its network of independent bottlers worldwide.”

“We are proud to support Coca-Cola as it continues to embrace the era of AI and looks to solutions like Azure OpenAI Service and Copilot for Microsoft 365 to drive innovation across every area of its business,” he added.

John Murphy, president and chief financial officer at The Coca-Cola Company, also said, “This new agreement builds on the success of Coca-Cola’s partnership strategy with Microsoft, showing our commitment to ongoing digital transformation. Our partnership with Microsoft has grown exponentially, from the $250 million agreement we initially announced in 2020 to $1.1 billion today.”

Meanwhile, Neeraj Tolmare, senior vice president and global chief information officer at The Coca-Cola Company, remarked, “Our expanded partnership with Microsoft is an important next chapter in Coca-Cola’s journey towards a digital-first enterprise powered by emerging technologies. Microsoft’s capabilities help accelerate our adoption of AI to create incremental enterprise value.”

The said agreement marks a major milestone in Coca-Cola’s digital transformation journey, aimed at broadening access to Microsoft’s cloud and AI platforms. This includes solutions like Microsoft 365, Power BI, Dynamics 365, Defender, and Fabric, which will improve efficiency, scalability, and drive innovation throughout the organisation.

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