To read this content please select one of the options below:

Mecca‐Cola: message in a bottle

Rachida Justo (Instituto de Empresa Business School, Madrid, Spain)
Cristina Cruz (Instituto de Empresa Business School, Madrid, Spain)

Journal of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship

ISSN: 1471-5201

Article publication date: 31 December 2008




This paper aims to describe how Taoufik Mathlouthi created Mecca‐Cola, a beverage designed as an alternative to major American colas. It is intended to raise student's consciousness about the fact that good opportunities can be driven by political and social changes. Second, it aims to bring them the opportunity to reflect about their own definition of a social entrepreneur and understand the challenges behind pursuing multiple objectives that is, trying to blend and integrate non‐profit goals with rigorous venture development practices.


To write this case, two complementary methodologies were relied on: interviews with founder and employees and use of secondary information such as press articles.


The case describes how what began as a venture for French Muslims, garnered international appeal, with markets opening up in 54 countries in less than two years. However, despite this success, the following stage of transforming Mecca‐Cola into a sustainable business while maintaining its “essence” was proving difficult for the company.


The case is intended for an undergraduate or MBA course in entrepreneurship. The innovative aspect is that the entrepreneur discovered a business opportunity that arose in the wake of the Iraq war in the form of discontent with US foreign policy among some sectors of the population. As courses on social entrepreneurship begin to emerge in academic institutions this case also offers an interesting example of the challenges brought about initiating this kind of business and achieving a double bottom line.



Justo, R. and Cruz, C. (2008), "Mecca‐Cola: message in a bottle", Journal of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship, Vol. 10 No. 1, pp. 40-56.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles