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Indra Nooyi is stepping down as CEO of PepsiCo after 12 years

Indra Nooyi

Indra Nooyi to step down as PepsiCo CEO after 12 years: Ramon Laguarta to Take Charge as the New CEO

Indra Nooyi is to step down as chief executive officer of food and beverage manufacturer  PepsiCo. Inc. and to hand over the reins to a top lieutenant in a major reshuffle. Nooyi, 62, will hand over the role to Ramon Laguarta, 54, as the sixth CEO of the company,  who is currently serving as the president of  PepsiCo. Inc. Nooyi will then become the president of the beverage giant and will continue to remain in position until early 2019. President Ramon Laguarta will take over the charge as CEO of the company on Oct. 3.

Nooyi, who is an Indian by birth became the first foreign-born CEO of Pepsi and the first woman to lead the one of the major chips and soda making company, whose revenue topped $63 billion last year. During her 24 year tenure at Pepsi, including 12 years as the chief executive officer, she has championed the Frito-Lay unit grow in a challenging industry and built on healthier drinks and snacks to a portfolio that includes Cheetos and Mountain Dew.

Laguarta, who has been associated with the company for  22-years was elected as president since September. He is overseeing global operations, public policy corporate strategy, and government affairs. Earlier then he served in leadership positions in the European and sub-Saharan Africa divisions.

Nooyi, joined  Pepsi in 1994 as head of the corporate strategy, promoted to the CEO job in 2006.

She took over charge as CEO of Pepsi at a crucial time when only a handful of women ran major U.S. companies, and there are still fewer than 30 female CEOs in the S&P 500.

Describing her step down she said “I think people like me, after we leave privileged CEO jobs, I don’t think we can go silent, We have to keep fighting the good fight to develop women, to mentor them, to support them, so that we can get more highly qualified women — and there’s plenty of them — into the boardroom, into C suites, and into the ultimate CEO job. My job is in fact just beginning once I leave PepsiCo because I can do things now that I was constrained to do when I was CEO of the company.”

Despite  Nooyi’s departure, the company clarified that the rest of PepsiCo’s senior leadership team will remain unchanged.  In 2017, Nooyi was credited by placing at No 2 on the US Fortune’s list of ‘The Most Powerful Women in Business’ outside the US. She had also achieved laurels like topping the list of highest-paid female CEOs.