Indian American Indra Nooyi steps down as PepsiCo CEO after 12 years

Indra Nooyi

Nooyi is the first woman to lead PepsiCo and the first Indian American woman to serve as CEO of a Fortune 500 company.

India Nooyi, the first woman to lead PepsiCo, will step down on October 3, the iconic beverage giant announced Monday.

The 62-year-old Indian American, who has been serving as the company’s CEO for the past 12 years, will remain Chairman “until early 2019” to help her successor Ramon Laguarta during the transition period.

Nooyi, who joined the company 24 years ago, is the first Indian American CEO of a Fortune 500 company.

Born in Chennai, India, Nooyi is graduated from the Yale School of Management in 1980.

“Today is a day of mixed emotions for me,” she said. “This company has been my life for nearly a quarter century and part of my heart will always remain here. But I am proud of all we’ve done to position PepsiCo for success, confident that Ramon and his senior leadership team will continue prudently balancing short-term and long-term priorities, and excited for all the great things that are in store for this company. PepsiCo’s best days are still ahead of it.”

PepsiCo praised Nooyi’s leadership, pointing out that, since she took over in 2006, the company posted shareholder return of 162 percent and it returned, through dividends and  share repurchases, nearly $80 billion.

READ: Indra Nooyi, Nikki Haley, Priyanka Chopra among Forbes list of most powerful women (November 6, 2017)

“Dividends per share nearly tripled from $1.16 in 2006 to $3.17 in 2017, a compound annual growth rate of nearly” 10 percent, the company said, adding that net revenue also grew “from $35 billion in 2006 to $63.5 billion in 2017, a compound annual growth rate of 5.5%,” during her tenure.

“Leading PepsiCo has truly been the honor of my lifetime, and I’m incredibly proud of all we have done over the past 12 years to advance the interests not only of shareholders, but all our stakeholders in the communities we serve,” Nooyi said.

“Growing up in India, I never imagined I’d have the opportunity to lead such an extraordinary company. Guided by our philosophy of Performance with Purpose — delivering sustained performance while making more nutritious products, limiting our environmental footprint and lifting up all the communities we serve—we’ve made a more meaningful impact in people’s lives than I ever dreamed possible.  PepsiCo today is in a strong position for continued growth with its brightest days still ahead.”

READ: Satya Nadella, Indra Nooyi, Bhavesh Patel in list of highest-paid CEOs (April 29, 2016)

She also praised Laguarta saying that he “is exactly the right person to build on” the company’s success. “He is a terrific executive with a long and proven track record of growing businesses,” she said. “He has a deep understanding of the changing preferences of consumers and other critical trends unfolding around the world, and he has demonstrated that he knows how to navigate them successfully. Ramon has been a critical partner in running the company, and I’m confident he will take PepsiCo to new and greater heights in the years to come.”


Following Indra Nooyi, Kal Penn and Jhumpa Lahiri quit White House panel over Charlottesville (August 18, 2017)

Indra Nooyi becomes Yale’s biggest alumni donor (January 13, 2016)

Top 5 Indian American CEOs in the US (August 11, 2015)

Indra Nooyi is the third highest paid female CEO in the US with $22.5 million in fiscal 2014 (April 15, 2015)

Nooyi to be honored with ‘Special Impact Award’ in New York (August 28, 2013)

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