Pepsi to Invest $500 mn in India
March 29, 2005

Enthused by four-fold growth in business in the last five years, US cola giant PepsiCo on Tuesday announced up to Rs 2,200 crore ($500 million) investment to consolidate its beverages and snacks business in India.

"We have invested over Rs 3,000 crore (Rs 30 billion) directly and Rs 900 crore (Rs 9 billion) through our partners so far and we are going to invest $300-500 million more over the next three to five years," Indra Nooyi, President and Chief Financial Officer, PepsiCo, told reporters in New Delhi.

Ranking India at number five worldwide in terms of revenues, Nooyi said PepsiCo's business has grown four fold in the last five years and the company has put in place a strategy to expand further.

PepsiCo, which pioneered the concept of contract farming in the country, has recently entered into a partnership with the Punjab government for cultivation of citrus fruits to expand juices business here.

Asked about the company's financial performance in India, Nooyi said: "We are making cash profits from our Indian business. I am bullish on India and looking at the market as a long term bet."

Of the announced investment of up to $500 million, Nooyi said about 60 per cent is targeted for the beverages segment while the rest would be for snacks.

Terming India as one of the most important global markets for PepsiCo, Nooyi claimed over the last five months Pepsi has emerged as number one in the marketshare in beverages segment and said: "It is the second biggest consumer brand in the country."

PepsiCo, which employs about 60,000 people directly or indirectly, has three snacks manufacturing plants with 50 lakh (5 million) outlets, up from 50,000 five years ago.

With the huge success of Kurkure brand, the company is likely to take it to other markets like the United States, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Middle East and Australia.

Asked whether PepsiCo would manufacture Kurkure here and then export, Nooyi said: "The product would be manufactured in the local markets to avoid transportation cost and make it a local product."

In the juices segment, the company is likely to launch new products in the near future.

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