Ex-PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi joins Amazon’s board

Full credit: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images

Indra Nooyi, former CEO of PepsiCo, joined Amazon’s board of directors Monday.

Nooyi, who ran the snack and beverage company for 12 years, stepped down in October. Before Nooyi became PepsiCo’s CEO in 2006, she served as the company’s chief financial officer.

During her 24-year-long tenure at the company, PepsiCo acquired big-name brands, invested in healthy products and fended off a call to split up PepsiCo’s food and beverage businesses. Nooyi left behind a nimbler company that was more responsive to the evolving tastes of its customers.

When Nooyi, who was born in India, stepped down, she was one of only a handful of women of color leading a Fortune 500 company. She was key to PepsiCo’s 1998 acquisition of Tropicana, the orange juice company. She also spearheaded a merger a few years later with Quaker Oats, which makes oatmeal and Gatorade. And she was instrumental in increasing the company’s focus on healthier foods and snacks.

The company revealed the news in an SEC filing, where it also announced that Nooyi will serve on the board’s audit committee.

Nooyi is the second high-profile addition to Amazon’s board this month.

Amazon recently added Starbucks COO Rosalind Brewer to its board. Brewer, who has been COO of Starbucks since October 2017, was CEO of Walmart’s Sam’s Club from 2012 to 2017. She was both the first African American and the first woman to lead a Walmart division.

In May of last year, Amazon adopted a shareholder proposal to apply the “Rooney Rule” — the National Football League policy that requires teams to consider minority candidates for coaching and operations-level roles — to its board of directors.

Amazon said the move formalized a process that was already in place. Other tech companies have vowed to increase diversity among their directors.

Nooyi has also served as a director of Schlumberger Limited since 2015.

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