Coca-Cola Amatil to close SA operations

Coca-Cola Amatil Group Managing Director, Alison Watkins said, "As an outcome of the review, we will make a $90 million investment at Richlands in Queensland".

The company will be closing its South Australian manufacturing facilities, principally at Thebarton, in 2019.

Coca-Cola Amatil intends to spend around $90 million over the next three years to remodel its supply chain.

In a statement to the ASX, Coca-Cola Amatil saidthe closure of the Thebarton facility would deliver the company a further $20 million in cost savings from 2020.

The beverage giant said it had reviewed its operations across Australia and concluded it should increase production in Queensland, where the additional investment will increase technology and automation.

"We want to invest in our supply chain so that we can play more strongly in the categories that are growing such as dairy, juice and the premium glass end of the beverages spectrum", she told AAP.

Ms Watkins said CCA would provide financial counselling and help find new jobs for workers affected by the 180 lost jobs. Watkins said that the $90 million investment will include automated warehouse with greater capacity, truck movements and comparatively lower operating costs and reduced materials handling. Some manufacturing from Adelaide will shift to Kewdale in WA, Moorabbin in Victoria and Northmead in NSW, CCA said.

Coca Cola says existing sales, distribution, warehousing, equipment servicing and Statewide Recycling teams in South Australia will be unaffected by the changes.

The company recorded a $171.8 million non-cash impairment charge against its troubled SPC tinned fruit and vegetable business.

The New Zealand and Fiji business posted a 6.9 per cent lift in underlying earnings to $105.6 million.

Coca-Cola Amatil announced that Mr David Gonski will retire as Chairman of the Board and Non-Executive Director of the Company following the completion of the Annual General Meeting in May 2017.

CCA also announced an on-market share buy-back of up to $350 million to begin from late March this year.

  • Leroy Wright