Why the Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd share price crashed today

With the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) turning in another strong performance today, shareholders of Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd (ASX: CCL) will be dismayed to see its share price drop by 3.5%.

Today’s decline is the latest in a series of declines in the last 12 months which sees the company’s share price trade almost 19% lower over the period. In fact, if you were to look even further back, the company has now lost almost a third of its value in the last five years.

The latest decline appears to be related to the disappointing results of Atlanta-based The Coca-Cola Company, which owns a 29% stake in Coca-Cola Amatil. It saw its own share price drop by almost 5% overnight on the back of results which showed softening demand, which led to the behemoth’s net revenue dropping by 4%.

The underwhelming performance of the Asia-Pacific region didn’t help matters. This segment which includes Coca-Cola Amatil saw a 4% decline in net revenue also.

Coca-Cola as a brand does appear to be in decline due in part to consumers enjoying healthier lifestyles and cutting down on their sugar intake. But because of its depth of beverages and incredible distribution model, I believe it can get through this.

I feel the decline we have seen this year in Coca-Cola Amatil’s shares has put them at an attractive price for long-term buy and hold investors that are prepared to be patient.

Its portfolio of beverages continues to get stronger. In recent years it has introduced teas and coffees, alcoholic beverages through Jim Beam, coconut waters, and most recently Monster energy drinks.

The company managed to win the rights to distribute Monster from under the noses of rival Schweppes recently. Monster is one of the most popular energy drinks in the world and will compete with the likes of Red Bull for a share of the $1.2 billion Australian energy drinks market.

I have hopes also that the Indonesian market will be the real growth driver for the company in the future. Its rapidly growing consumer class should make it a key market in the future, which I believe has the potential to be even more lucrative than the Australian market.

According to the brokerage arm of Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA), analysts are still quite optimistic about its growth prospects. The consensus forecast is for Coca-Cola Amatil to grow its earnings by over 4% per annum through to 2018.

It may not be anywhere near the explosive 34% per annum growth expected of notable Coca-Cola stockist Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Ltd. (ASX: DMP), but it is a vast improvement from the average decline of 5% per annum in the last five years.

Foolish takeaway

I have little doubt it will be a tough road ahead as the company adjusts to changes in consumer preferences. But ultimately I expect patient investors will be rewarded greatly. Just like investors in these three blue chip shares might be, too. I believe they could be set to soar in the next 12 months, so don’t miss out.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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