The global corporate world will lose a prominent woman CEO in Chennai-born Indra Nooyi.
The global corporate world will lose a prominent woman CEO in Chennai-born Indra Nooyi. She was not only a dynamic chief executive but also a leading representative of women’s causes, never afraid to take a stand on gender issues and women’s safety. As Pepsi’s boss, she achieved many things, like standing up to an activist investor and raising her voice over unfair taxes on soda, for their sugar content. She steered the fizzy drinks/salty snacks maker away from dietary profligacy by giving it a healthy makeover, serving up snacks and drinks of lesser calories. Her performance was notable, for only 25 of the S&P 500 companies have women at the helm. Indra was a symbol of what women can do in tasks handled predominantly by men.
Beyond the corporate world, where she steered Pepsi past many challenges, Indra also took on the task of speaking truth to power. People in high positions are usually reluctant to speak up on social issues. Not Indra, a success story herself as a middle-class Chennai girl who went on to shine in the United States. She was one of the first to publicly express concerns over Donald Trump’s early actions as US President, not only because these were likely to harm US multinationals in global markets but also as his unrestrained rhetoric against Muslims and immigrants disturbed domestic peace. Her stand on the safety of all people, including non-whites and LGBTQI, in the US, was much appreciated. As a woman, in addressing the concern many mothers have over healthy food for kids, she won many hearts.