The American Civil Rights Project, a national civil rights organization, is investigating on behalf of shareholders the officers and directors of Coca Cola Company (NYSE: KO) for breaches of fiduciary duties.
If you are an interested shareholder who has held KO stock since before January 28, 2021, please click here and tell us how to contact you.
On January 28, 2021, Coca Cola’s since-departed General Counsel Bradley Gayton announced a series of policies for all Coke’s outside counsel. These policies appear to require Coke’s outside counsel to discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, sex, and gender in their hiring, firing, staffing, and compensation decisions; they condition both: (a) Coke’s continued use of law firms on their documented compliance with these policies; and (b) what Coke will pay lawyers for the same work on the demographic makeup of the lawyers working Coke’s matters. Numerous commentators have highlighted that these policies both: (i) require Coke’s lawyers to violate the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and of 1866; and (ii) commit Coke itself to violating the Civil Rights Act of 1866. The ACR Project is deeply skeptical that adopting and retaining a company policy of violating federal law could be consistent with the fiduciary obligations of Coke’s officers and directors. It also is investigating whether the adoption of these seemingly illegal policies created a material potential liability that continues to accrue, which Coke has failed to disclose in its SEC filings.
Despite Gayton’s exit, Coke has retained the policies in question.
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