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The Coca-Cola power network

By Laurie Bennett

August 12, 2011 at 8:29am

They are the Coca-Cola kings - billionaires and multi-millionaires who sit on the beverage company board and hold millions of dollars in company stock, with millions more invested elsewhere.

Two billionaires - IAC/InterActive Chairman Barry Diller and investment banker Herbert A. Allen Jr. belong to the club. Warren Buffett is a former member; his son Howard became a director in December.

Multimillionaires in the Atlanta boardroom include former SunTrust Banks CEO James B. Williams, Allen & Co. Chairman Donald Keough and Coke Chairman Muhtar Kent.

Muhtar Kent
Muhtar Kent
Coca-Cola chairman

Lesser lights, if only on a financial scale, include former Sen. Sam Nunn, former baseball commissioner Peter Ueberroth and former Labor Secretary Alexis Herman.

If he were a different sort of political with a better organization, hometown presidential candidate Newt Gingrich might have had a money machine that would have shamed the Texas power base of Rick Perry.

But so far, not a single Coca-Cola board member has been reported as contributing to the Gingrich 2012 campaign.

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