In a “dynamic and forward-thinking global approach”, PepsiCo India announced a leadership-level transition. The food and beverage manufacturer’s India team has made Jagrut Kotecha, the current chief commercial officer of PepsiCo Africa, Middle-East and South Africa (AMESA), its CEO. The move came after incumbent chief executive Ahmed El Sheikh was given responsibility for the company’s Middle East branch after his seven-year-long stint with the India team.

Newly-appointed PepsiCo India CEO Jagrut Kotecha.

The company said the decision was made as a part of its series of leadership changes across AMESA and communicated to the India employees yesterday.

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“India remains a pivotal market for PepsiCo, playing a crucial role in our global strategy. Over the last six years, Ahmed has been instrumental in transforming our business, driving innovation and steering the team through challenging landscapes. I am equally excited to welcome Jagrut to the India executive team and am certain that we will scale new zeniths of success under his leadership with our Indian consumers,” Eugene Willemsen, CEO of Africa, Middle-East and South Asia, said in a statement.

Joined in 1994, Kotecha has extensive experience as a sales and brand manager and has held end-to-end profit and loss (P&L) responsibility. He was a vice-president of PepsiCo India in 2018 when he oversaw the innovations and transformation of the company’s products – Lay’s and Kurkure – to turn them better suited for Indian consumers. He also led the launch of another snack, Doritos, in 2017.

PepsiCo India has made a spate of launches in the last couple of years following a rise in demand for snacks and chips amid the pandemic, which continues to grow. The fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) major has also lined up some more launches to meet the demand of Indian consumers.

Meanwhile, the US-based firm has also decided to expand its Global Business Services Centre in Hyderabad from the current strength of 250 to 4,000 employees.

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