Skadden and Jones Day lead on Monster’s £1.3bn deal with Coca-Cola

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and Jones Day are among the firms advising the Coca-Cola Company on its partnership deal with energy drink business Monster.

The global drinks brand is also to pay $2.15bn (£1.3bn) in exchange for a 16.7 per cent stake in Monster, gaining two seats on the its board of directors. 

The deal involves Coca-Cola transferring its global energy drinks business to Monster. In exchange, Monster will pick up Coca-Cola’s non-energy drinks business which includes Peace Tea and Hansen’s Natural Sodas. 

Jones Day advised Monster Beverage Corporate on the transaction. The firm fielded a team led by New York-based M&A partners Bob Profusek and Andy Levine. It also included private equity partner Andrew Burchiel. 

Washington DC based antitrust partners David Wales and Ken Field also had a hand in the transaction, alongside associate Michael Gleason, and Brussels-based Charles de Navacelle. Partners Ed Kennedy and Kelly Latta in New York advised on tax aspects. 

Schulte Roth & Zabel was also instructed by Monster to play a role on due diligence and disclosure aspects, led by M&A special counsel Eric Piasta in New York. 

Meanwhile, Skadden is lined up to advise the Coca-Cola Company, fielding a team including M&A partners Martha McGarry, Thomas Greenberg and Peter Serating. 

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton will also step up to advise Coca-Cola on the antitrust aspects of the transaction, primarily out of its Washington DC office. The firm’s team includes Cleary’s managing partner Mark Leddy and partners Nicholas Levy and Leah Brannon, alongside associates Elaine Ewing and Ian Hastings. 

Background to this deal: 

Skadden has a longstanding relationship with Coca-Cola, having advised on a huge raft of deals for the drinks manufacturer in recent years. In 2010, the firm advised on Coca-Cola’s $13bn purchase of its North American bottling operations with McGarry – the first woman to become partner in Skadden’s M&A practice – playing a key role. 

The drinks giant also turns to Cleary from time to time. On the above deal, it advised on US and European antitrust matters, while in 2012 the firm took led as Coca-Cola Hellenic switched its main listing from Athens to the London Stock Exchange (15 October 2012).

Monster has been a client of Jones Day’s for about five years, with the firm having a hand in a number of smaller transactions for the drinks business since then.