New York — Coca-Cola will step up its bid to transform the company into a far leaner operation under incoming CEO James Quincey. The softdrink giant vowed to cut costs by an additional $800m a year, adding to a plan to obtain $3bn in savings. The belt-tightening effort accompanies a move to spin off much of Coca-Cola’s bottling operations, one of the company’s biggest strategic changes in decades. Quincey takes the reins on May 1 from Muhtar Kent, who has been divesting bottling plants around the world. The company is trying to re-emerge as a more focused — and profitable — business, which will concentrate on developing new drinks and selling ingredients to partners. For now, the changes are taking a toll on results. Coca-Cola posted first-quarter earnings of 43 US cents a share on Tuesday, short of the 44c predicted by analysts. A decline in softdrink volumes and currency fluctuations also continued to weigh on sales. Revenue fell 11% last quarter, with the structural changes accou...

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