This week PepsiCo overtook Coca-Cola in market cap for the first time in the 112 years of fierce competition between the two "cola" companies. Pepsi’s stock is now valued at $98.4 billion while Coca-Cola’s shares are worth $97.9 billion. Steven Reinemund, the current CEO of Pepsi, is given a lot of the credit for Pepsi’s move to the number one position over Coke. Previously, Reinemund was CEO of Pizza Hut and Chairman of Plano-based Frito-Lay, which is owned by Pepsi. The Frito-Lay snacks have played an important role not only in helping grow the revenues and profits at Pepsi but also in developing management talent to run the parent company. Wayne Calloway, who succeeded Don Kendall as Chairman of Pepsi in 1986, earned his management spurs as CEO of Frito-Lay. Steven Reinemund followed the same path in his move upward into the CEO spot at Pepsi.
In January of this year, Business Week named Reinemund as one of the best managers of 2004. As the writer put it, "Reinemund’s greatest achievement is in developing people more than products … PepsiCo has developed one of the deepest executive benches in Corporate America."
Hats off to Steve Reinemund and all of the fine folks at Pepsi. We are pleased that the company has a major presence in our area with its Frito-Lay headquarters located in Plano.