The partnership between 2041 and Coca-Cola began at the 2002 World Summit for Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, where Robert Swan was challenged by the Coca-Cola Company to:

  • Provide inspired leadership and teamwork through positive participation
  • Tackle real challenges with flawless execution
  • Be discovered doing real things
  • Accelerate ongoing bottler involvement
  • Promote efficient use of water, energy and packaging
  • Support Coca-Cola Africa’s AIDS awareness and prevention program

The challenge formed the basis of a purposeful and successful relationship that has involved many people throughout the Coca-Cola company.

January – May 2003

The Cape to Rio Yacht Race

An official Sustainability Scroll outlining the achievements of the Johannesburg World Summit is entrusted to Robert Swan and the Coca-Cola Company by the South African Minister for the Environment, Valli Moosa. Yacht 2041 on the Cape to Rio Yacht Race would deliver the scroll to the Brazilian Minister for the Environment.


May 2003 – May 2004

The Circumnavigation of Africa

The Coca-Cola focus of this historic voyage would be AIDS awareness, and recycling. The yacht covered 23,500 nautical miles, visited over 20 countries and stopped at more than 30 towns and cities. Over 40 Coca-Cola employees and 120 Bottlers crewed 2041 on various legs of the circumnavigation.

December 2004 – January 2005

The Sydney Hobart Yacht Race

In partnership with Coca-Cola, Robert’s yacht 2041, enters the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race with the first sails made from recycled plastic bottles. The yacht was crewed by Coca-Cola employees and teachers selected for their outstanding contribution to young people on healthy active life-styles.


2003 – 2008

Inspire Antarctic Expeditions

Coca-Cola became the first corporation to participate in an expedition to Antarctica. Each year an international group of Coca-Cola employees and bottlers join the expedition and embark on a journey of inspirational leadership and teamwork.

Over the years the Coca-Cola employees have supported the design and building of the world’s first education station in Antarctica, The E-Base.