Coca-Cola chose a new, but familiar, location for its 2016 Annual Meeting of Shareowners. Executives welcomed nearly 500 shareowners on Wednesday to the World of Coca-Cola in downtown Atlanta’s Pemberton Place – named for the local pharmacist who invented the beloved beverage 130 years ago next month – to share both the company’s 2015 results and long-term growth agenda.
To mark the occasion, the company kept the doors to the popular attraction open for the first-ever Coca-Cola Shareowner Day. More than 1,600 shareowners enjoyed guided tours throughout the afternoon.
Here are a few comments we captured while tagging along and chatting up Coca-Cola shareowners:
Clark Davis – Winchester, Va.
“I’ve been a stockholder for generations. That’s what helped pay for the trip – all the dividends and splits. It was a classy show. Very nice.”
Paul and Debbie Gomulinski – St. Augustine, Fla.
“Coca-Cola is one of those lifetime stocks…we’ll pass it to our kids and tell our kids, ‘never sell it.’”
Leslie Mayorga – Suwanee, Ga.
On her motivation for attending:
“We got a Proxy in the mail and, as we were reading through it, we saw that we would be invited to come [to Shareowner Day]. We thought, ‘Oh what a good opportunity'. We’ve been here 15 or 20 times with the kids and the grandkids, but what a unique experience to actually sit in on a meeting.”
Jeff Hansen – Charlotte, N.C.
“I think it’s a good investment. It’s a dynamite brand, recognized all over the world, so I don’t think you can go wrong investing in Coke.”
David Trivino – Marietta, Ga.
“Usually when I have out-of-town guests, we come to visit the World of Coke. Just all the memorabilia, the way it’s influenced things all over the world, which I think is important. I’ve got extended family all over the world, and when they come here, everyone knows Coca-Cola... that Atlanta is the home of Coca-Cola."
Elyssa Williams – Roswell, Ga.
“I got my shares from my grandparents. I’m a lifelong shareowner.”
“I haven’t been to an event like this before and I haven’t been to World of Coke in about 20 years, so it’s changed quite a bit. It’s really nice, it’s been great.”
“I thought it sounded like a great opportunity to see what’s here and to bring my daughter along so she could learn a little bit about what it’s like to own shares in any company, and also to be able to show her what it’s like to be able to be an owner of a really big company like Coke.”