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CINCINNATI (AdAge.com) -- Procter & Gamble Co. and Coca-Cola Co. today announced they will part ways rather than pursue a product development and distribution alliance for drink and snack brands, a move that completes the unraveling of a deal announced with much fanfare earlier this year.

The alliance, announced in February, was originally to have combined P&G's Pringles and Sunny Delight brands with Coke's Minute Maid, Hi-C, Five Alive and other juice brands in a stand-alone company owned 50% by each partner.

Last month, the two companies said they were discussing a more limited deal involving distribution of Pringles via the Coca-Cola bottling system and development of health and wellness beverages based on P&G's extensive but largely untapped portfolio of food and beverage patents.

In a brief announcement today, the companies said they had decided to "independently pursue opportunities to grow their respective businesses."

Executives familiar with the situation said Coca-Cola executives got cold feet about the deal after taking a closer look at the economics and practicalities of moving Pringles through Coke's bottler system. But a P&G spokeswoman said the decision was mutual.

"The potential alliance with Coke was one option, but not the only option," she said. "We believe there are other opportunities out there, so we are interested in exploring alternative ways to expand, particularly for Pringles, point-of-purchase distribution."

While P&G is looking to sell or spin off into an alliance two of its other food brands, Crisco and Jif, the spokeswoman said P&G would focus on building Pringles and Sunny Delight, the former of which is among P&G's 11 global brands with sales of more than $1 billion.

"We know what [P&G President-CEO A.G. Lafley's] strategic focus is," she said. "It's clearly driving businesses that have No. 1 or No. 2 market positions."

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