PepsiCo Launches North America Multicultural Equity and Inclusion Business

Liz Dominguez
Managing Editor
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PepsiCo is investing in a new segment of business with equity and inclusion in mind.

The new North America multicultural business and equity development organization will accelerate company efforts to help address inequalities for historically excluded people and underserved businesses and communities.

It will introduce a “one-team approach” to drive sustained change across its North America beverage and convenience foods businesses.

This is the company’s next step in its PepsiCo's racial equality journey (REJ), initially announced in 2020 and a key strategy in its pep+ (PepsiCo Positive) plan to transform how it creates growth and shared value. 

The company's REJ commitments include investing more than $570 million over five years to “increase Black and Hispanic representation, leverage the company's scale and influence across suppliers and strategic partners, and help address systemic barriers and create economic opportunities for Black and Hispanic Americans.” 

[Related: PepsiCo Grows Community College Commitments]

PepsiCo has appointed Derek Lewis the first president of multicultural business and equity development to lead the effort. Lewis will report to Kirk Tanner, CEO, PepsiCo Beverages North America and Steven Williams, CEO, PepsiCo Foods North America.

Lewis has been with the company for 34 years, most recently serving as president of PepsiCo Beverages North America's south division.

According to Lewis, leveraging this new team across PepsiCo's beverage and convenient foods businesses will allow the company to more quickly scale “this important work in communities across North America."

"Incorporating and accelerating our equality agenda will now be a new area of strength as we create sustained change in the communities where we live and work," he added.

    Changes at the Business-Level
    • Accelerate retailer business development in multicultural communities
    • Expand existing programing, including Pepsi Dig In, Black Restaurant Accelerator Program, and Juntos Crecemos, to support Black and Hispanic communities
    • Support and invest of diverse suppliers and partners
    • Elevate consumer awareness and sales with key multicultural partnerships across the beverage and convenient foods portfolios
    • Amplify brand activations and highlight programs that provide a sense of community and purpose
    Equity-Forward Strategies
    • Rebrand and expand Pepsi Stronger Together community engagement program nationally 
    • Elevate PepsiCo as a diverse employer
    • Support the company's employee resource groups that celebrate diversity
    • Empower and invigorate associates that make, move, and sell PepsiCo products

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