July 13 (Bloomberg) -- Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc., the third-largest U.S. soda maker, said its board authorized the repurchase of $1 billion in shares over the next three years to return cash to shareholders.
The beverage maker now has $1.45 billion in share repurchases outstanding out of $2 billion in authorizations, according to a statement today. The Plano, Texas-based company had 245.7 million shares outstanding as of May 3, regulatory filings show.
Dr Pepper Snapple, led by Chief Executive Officer Larry Young, said its free cash flow and a $715 million distribution payment from Coca-Cola Co. allowed it to increase share repurchases. The shares of Dr Pepper Snapple had gained 36 percent this year before today.
Coca-Cola last month agreed to sell brands including Dr Pepper and Canada Dry in some regions of the U.S. and Canada for 20 years.
Dr Pepper Snapple rose 58 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $39.16 at 4:01 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading.
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