PURCHASE, NY. — PepsiCo, Inc. is launching a $172 million set of initiatives over five years in a three-pronged approach to lift up Hispanic Americans. The three prongs are focusing on increasing Hispanic middle management representation at PepsiCo, building a network of Hispanic-owned companies and providing access to higher education for Hispanics across America.
“As you can imagine, this effort is very personal for me,” said Ramon Laguarta, chief executive officer of PepsiCo and a native of Barcelona, Spain. “Beyond the deep commitment to equality inherited from my parents, having lived for several years as a Spanish-speaking immigrant in the US, I have grown to identify with this country’s vibrant, diverse Hispanic community. When I became CEO, I vowed to use my position to make the road easier for Hispanics and other groups impacted by systemic inequality, and that’s exactly what PepsiCo’s racial equality journey is all about.”
PepsiCo called the three prongs people, businesses and communities.
PepsiCo under its people plans will seek to expand Hispanic managerial representation to 10% of its workforce by 2025 by hiring 120 Hispanic managers, including 50 Hispanic executives. The company will partner with national and local Hispanic organizations and minority-owned search firms to accelerate diverse recruitment efforts.
PepsiCo under its businesses plans will build on this year’s $275 million investment in Hispanic-owned businesses by establishing relationships between Hispanic-owned companies and PepsiCo buyers and by expanding Hispanic-owned supplier capability in areas such as agriculture and sustainable packaging. PepsiCo will invest $87 million in the company’s Hispanic business units and $50 million over five years to strengthen Hispanic-owned businesses through access to capital not available through traditional sources and tools to address structural barriers to success.
PepsiCo under its communities plan will invest $35 million over five years. The company plans to expand an existing two-year/trade certificate community scholarship program to include additional scholarships for Hispanics and to provide scholarships for students transitioning from two-year programs to four-year programs in the PepsiCo headquarter locations of New York, Dallas and Chicago. PepsiCo also will fund community organization partners that deliver programs to uplift the Hispanic community.
“Over the past seven months, the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallout have laid bare many of the systemic inequities facing racial minorities in the United States,” Mr. Laguarta said. “We’ve watched helplessly as the virus disproportionately claimed Black and Brown lives, and borne witness on a national scale to the pain and frustration, the outrage and indignity, endured by so many of our friends and colleagues with heartbreaking frequency.
“Through it all, one of the few bright spots has been the way we’ve rallied together as a company to support each other and stand up for our PepsiCo values. As we all know, PepsiCo is built on a foundation of diversity. We have long recognized that our company thrives when we reflect the communities we serve, and that our size and scale endow us with the ability, and responsibility, to help build a more equitable, more inclusive world.”