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USA (Web Desk) Net income at Coca-Cola surged by 61% during the 2015 fourth quarter to just over $1.2 billion in comparison to the same reporting period one year ago, as an increase globally in volume drove the increase.

The per share earnings for the global soft drinks giant were 38 cents which beat analyst estimates that averaged 36 cents.

The operating revenue for the company fell by 8% to just over $10 billion during the quarter. It would have been a drop of 1% when taking into consideration the negative effect of exchange rates with currency, said Coca-Cola. The company said the result would have increased if it were not for six fewer reporting days for the quarter.

Beverage volume globally rose by 3% for the period, including a rise of 2% in its sparking beverages, which is encouraging as Coca-Cola looks to fend off a health-conscious tide of consumers who have been spurning drinks with added sugar.

For the three months, Coca-Cola organic sales of branded drinks were up 1%, Sprite increased 3% and Coke Zero was up 7%. Diet Coke was a disappointment with a drop of 5%.

The company announced last Thursday that it would be accelerating its plan of shifting it bottling operations in North America to franchised operations.

The company said it is planning now to do that by 2017. It also has signed a letter of intent to move it China bottling operations that are company owned to China Foods Limited as well as Swire Beverage Holdings, two partners in the most populous market in the world.

In a preview for 2016, Coca-Cola has projected growth in organic revenue of between 4% and 5% and income growth pretax unaffected by the strong dollar of between 6% and 8%.

The competition from PepsiCo and other soft drink and natural drink makers has made it much hard to see growth. International sales are not as affected by consumers changing to non-sugary drinks, especially in markets such as Latin America.

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