The Wall Street Journal: PepsiCo explores options for Russian business as Ukraine crisis deepens
is exploring options for its business in Russia, including writing off the value of the unit, according to people familiar with the matter, a move that would mark a turn for a company that introduced American cola to the Soviet Union at the height of the Cold War.
Large Western companies are under increasing pressure to pull out of the country in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. PepsiCo is reluctant to shut down its Russian unit—which includes a large dairy business it bought for about $5 billion a decade ago—because tens of thousands of Russians depend on the company for their livelihoods and for daily essentials like milk and baby formula, the people familiar with the matter said.
Revenue from PepsiCo’s Russian unit was $3.4 billion in 2021, making it the third-largest market for the company after the U.S. and Mexico. The impact of writing off the Russian unit would be minimal because it contributes little to PepsiCo’s earnings, some of the people said.
A growing number of Western companies have said they plan to pull out of Russia or make changes to their businesses there. Those moves came after Western governments imposed sanctions on the country in retaliation for its invasion of Ukraine, and financial firms took steps that could close off Russia from global markets.
An expanded version of this article appears on WSJ.com.
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