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Last Updated: Friday, 20 February, 2004, 07:24 GMT
Coca-Cola boss Daft to step down
Douglas Daft, Coca-Cola CEO
Daft's tenure got mixed reviews
Doug Daft has said he will retire as the chief executive of soft drinks company Coca-Cola at the end of 2004.

His time in office has been dogged by slow sales, tame share performance and a government accounting probe.

The world's largest drinks company said 60-year-old Mr Daft's departure was unrelated to the company's problems.

Executives such as chief operating officer Steve Heyer are being tipped as replacements, though the company said it also will vet external candidates.

Not clear

Analysts offered mixed reactions to the news.

Some said a new face might be able to energise the company and boost profit, helping it overtake rival PepsiCo.

Others, however, highlighted Mr Daft's achievements such as cost cutting and said that his move may have been too early.

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