Pepsi’s billions spent on push to switch to healthy snacks evaporates and CEO Indra Nooyi is probably on her way out. Like any prominent executive who screws up horrendously, she’ll be moving on to a bigger job, rumored to be head of the World Bank, where she can squander taxpayers’ money instead of shareholders’.
While her push to play up PepsiCo’s nutritional offerings may have stumbled amid continued enthusiasm for sugary soda and salty snacks, it underscores her desire to make a positive impact on how people eat worldwide.
At least a home builder who follows his impulse to go environmental wastes just his own money. Nooyi comes close to destroying a company as large as Pepsi because she wants to feel good about herself? She should be fired and sued, immediately.
Although I’ve pointed it out here repeatedly, it probably bears repeating: home buyers don’t care about and certainly won’t pay extra for “green” features like bamboo flooring, low-volatile paint, recycled roof shingles or even an extra large blue bin. Hell, I can’t even get them excited about a home’s super-efficient furnace, something that will actually save them hundreds of dollars a month in heating costs. Builders who bother with this stuff should figure that they’re reaching into their pockets because they feel it’s the right thing to do – that money is never coming back.
But why on earth would someone looking for potato chips and sugar water be the least bit interested in organic carrot baked swizzle sticks? Lose your focus, kill your company. So its off to the public sector for Nooyi, where incompetence is considered the norm.
UPDATE: Another thought: this lady’s move away from the traditional snack food business and into the loser organic program was inspired at least in part, I once read in an interview with her, by a desire to impress her teen-aged daughters. That bit of hubris will cost 8,700 people their jibs, according to this article, and force stockholders to spend $600 million to repair the brand name. I suppose the stockholders can afford the loss, but what about all those employees tossed out of work? I doubt Nooyi’s daughters are impressed. I know I’m not (and you know, when I read that interview a while ago where she announced her intention to move in this direction I thought to myself, “short this company”. I didn’t, but I’ll bet some traders made hay on this ill-fated bet).