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Coke to Buy Marconi Software

May 18, 2000|Bloomberg News

Coca-Cola Co. and its bottlers plan to spend $100 million on Marconi software that will let soft-drink vending machines take credit and debit cards. The world's largest soft-drink maker will use a Marconi telecommunications system to connect 500,000 machines worldwide to the Internet and allow electronic payments. Marconi, Britain's telecommunications-equipment maker, will supply the system through its Atlanta-based Marconi Online unit. Coca-Cola expects the system to help it improve inventory management and customer service. Marconi's software also will let beverage consumers browse the Internet and use audio and video to communicate with the vending machines. Coca-Cola wouldn't disclose details. Coca-Cola fell 69 cents to close at $48.25 on the NYSE.

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