Pepsico Acquisitions & Mergers


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  • 1961 - Merger between Frito Company and H.W. Lay Company to form Frito-Lay
  • 1965 - Merger between Pepsi-Cola Company and Frito-Lay to form PepsiCo
  • 1966 - Acquisition of Sabritas
  • 1990 - Acquisition of Gamesa
  • 1997 - Spin off of restaurant divisions including Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and KFC into Tricon Global Restaurants (later Yum! Brands)
  • 1998 - Acquisition of Tropicana
  • 2001 - Merger with Quaker Oats Company
  • 2010 - Acquisitions of Pepsi Bottling Group and PepsiAmericas, inc. 
  • 2010 - Majority stake acquisition of Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods in Russia
  • 2011 - Remaining stake acquisition of Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods
  • 2012 - Joint venture with Muller Group named Muller Quaker Dairy (dissolved in 2015)
  • 2018 - Acquisition of Bare Snacks
  • 2018 - Acquisition of SodaStream
  • 2019 - Acquisition of BFY Brands  
  • 2020 - Acquisition of Pioneer Foods
  • 2020 - Acquisition of Rockstar Energy
  • 2021 - Sale of majority stake in Tropicana, Naked and other juice brands to PAI Partners
  • 2022 - $550 million acquisition of stake in Celsius


© History Oasis

In 1961, the Frito Company, founded by Elmer Doolin in 1932 and makers of Fritos corn chips, merged with the H.W. Lay Company, founded by Herman Lay in 1932 and makers of potato chips.

This merger of the two leading snack food companies created a powerhouse corporation called Frito-Lay, Inc., combining complementary salty snack food portfolios under one roof.

The new entity Frito-Lay would go on to become an exceedingly successful business with its wide array of crisps and chips brands.


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In 1965, Pepsi-Cola Company, the giant soft drinks firm founded in 1898, joined forces with the recently combined savory snack foods corporation Frito-Lay, forming a new company named PepsiCo.

The new business proved a formidable combination of Pepsi-Cola’s portfolio of sweet beverages and Frito Lay's diverse line of salted snack brands, foreshadowing the ambitious conglomerate PepsiCo would swiftly become.

This merger marked a pivotal alignment towards the multinational food, snack and beverage powerhouse PepsiCo operates as today.


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Further expanding its food and beverage empire in 1966, the fledgling PepsiCo acquired Sabritas, a prominent Mexican snack food company manufacturing potato chips along with local brands like Crujitos and Sabritones.

The Sabritas acquisition allowed new parent company PepsiCo to gain an early foothold in the Mexican snack market, complementing their core U.S. Frito-Lay snack business.

This strategic purchase kicked off PepsiCo’s long history of growth through acquisitions of regional food and beverage brands.


© History Oasis
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Bolstering its snack food division and further establishing its presence in Mexico, PepsiCo in 1990 purchased leading Mexican cookie and baking company Gamesa, maker of popular local brands like Emperador, Arcoiris, and Marías Gamesa cookies.

The acquisition of Gamesa gave PepsiCo control of Mexico's top cookie manufacturer while adding another range of snack products to target Latin American consumers.

This purchase supplemented PepsiCo’s previous Mexican acquisition of Sabritas as the company continued utilizing a strategy of strategic regional purchases to fuel international growth.


Yum brands
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In 1997, PepsiCo spun off its profitable restaurant chains Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and KFC into an independent company named Tricon Global Restaurants.

After decades of owning these major fast food chains, PepsiCo made a strategic decision to focus on its core food and beverage business while realizing the benefit of its successful restaurant empire as a separate entity.

Tricon would go on to be rebranded as Yum! Brands in 2002, cementing the spin-off restaurant company as a power player in its own right in the global food service industry.


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Expanding its beverage segment in 1998, PepsiCo executed one of several strategically transformational acquisitions, purchasing fruit juice and drink maker Tropicana Products for $3.3 billion, adding orange juice and other juice varieties to its arsenal.

The Tropicana acquisition bolstered PepsiCo's beverage offerings, keeping pace with shifting consumer preferences towards healthier refreshment alternatives amid growing health consciousness trends.

Bringing the prominent Tropicana name under PepsiCo's umbrella proved one of numerous successfully integrated major brand purchases cementing PepsiCo's diversity as a food and beverage conglomerate.


Quaker Oats
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In 2001, PepsiCo greatly reinforced its portfolio of food brands, merging with the Quaker Oats Company in a $13.4 billion deal, assimilating Quaker's powerhouse brand equity in oatmeal, rice, cereal and grain-based products.

Adding to prior deals enhancing its beverage line, the high-profile Quaker Oats deal underscored PepsiCo's determination to diversify beyond soft drinks into a wider range of food categories.

The major merger made PepsiCo one of the world's foremost food and beverage companies, reflected by flagship brands like Gatorade and Chewy Granola Bars augmenting its arsenal alongside stalwarts like Pepsi and Frito-Lay.


Pepsi Bottling Group
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Seeking to unify control of its product supply chain, in 2010 PepsiCo brought company-owned bottling back in-house, acquiring its two largest independent North American bottlers, the Pepsi Bottling Group and PepsiAmericas, Inc. for $7.8 billion.

These two sizable purchases gave Pepsi power over key routes-to-market, better enabling pricing, distribution and marketing control as self-owned entities replaced independent bottling partners.

The integrations of the Pepsi Bottling Group and PepsiAmericas revived PepsiCo as a fully integrated drinks provider overseeing beverages from manufacturing to merchandising.


Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods
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Expanding its global footprint in 2010, PepsiCo acquired a majority stake in Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods, Russia’s leading branded food and beverages company, for $3.8 billion, establishing a foothold in the growing Russian market.

Adding juice and dairy brands like J7 and Agusha to its portfolio, the Wimm-Bill-Dann deal gave PepsiCo scale in the second largest European food and drink market while diversifying into products tailored for Eastern European tastes.

PepsiCo’s Russian foray exemplified its strategy of capturing growth in emerging markets, which would see the company garner nearly 30% of net revenues internationally within the decade.


Muller Group
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Looking to make inroads into the dairy space in 2012, PepsiCo entered a joint venture with Germany's Theo Müller Group called Müller Quaker Dairy to introduce yogurt products that merged Dannon and Quaker Oats branding.

Despite intentions to challenge North American yogurt juggernauts by leveraging the strengths of respective partners, the venture struggled to gain distribution and supermarket shelf space, falling well short of sales expectations.

Hampered by distribution woes and unable to cultivate a competitive edge, Müller Quaker Dairy was dissolved amicably in 2015, winding down PepsiCo's three-year foray into the dairy market.


Bare Snacks
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Strengthening its portfolio of ostensibly healthier snack options, in 2018 PepsiCo purchased fast-growing baked fruit and vegetable snack maker Bare Snacks, adding banana, apple, and coconut chips to target the expanding better-for-you space.

The addition of the Bare Snacks natural chips range complemented PepsiCo’s past acquisitions of seemingly wholesome brands as consumer preferences increasingly tilted toward responsible and sustainable products.

The deal neatly aligned with PepsiCo’s publicly stated strategic initiative to provide consumers a diverse balance of snacks made from wholesome ingredients to augment its traditional mainstays.


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PepsiCo took a major step into the intersection of tech and sustainability in 2018, acquiring popular countertop home carbonated drink maker SodaStream for $3.2 billion, adding customizable sparkling water while reducing reliance on packaged goods.

The move gave PepsiCo an inroad to compete in the profitable seltzer market via an appliance considered more environmentally friendly than packaged beverages dependent on disposable plastic and cans.

The high-tech SodaStream deal represented a shrewd balance of innovation and adaptation to the contemporary challenges facing traditional beverage makers and bottlers amid shifting consumer preferences.


BFY Brands
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Further bulking up its stable of ostensive better-for-you snack brands in 2019, PepsiCo acquired BFY Brands, maker of flavorful yet supposedly wholesome snacks like PopCorners air-popped chips and Veggie Sticks.

The purchase of BFY Brands allowed PepsiCo to tout an expanded assortment of responsible snacks to appeal to customers favoring options perceived as more sensible and nutritious.

Adding BFY's range of snacks touted as guilt-free indulgences supplemented PepsiCo’s priori acquisition of Bare Snacks in its quest to amplify options across the nutritional spectrum.


Pioneer Foods
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Bolstering its footprint throughout Africa while adding cereal and grain snack brands beloved in the region, in 2020 PepsiCo purchased South Africa's largest food company Pioneer Foods for $1.7 billion.

PepsiCo gained Pioneer Foods' much-loved Weet-Bix cereal brand and regional snack staples like Bokomo breakfast cereal to catalyze expansion across the African continent's rapidly growing food and beverage markets.

The Pioneer Foods deal intertwined PepsiCo with brands boasting loyal followings in Africa, affording crucial inroads facilitating broader distribution of PepsiCo’s products across the region.


Rockstar Energy
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Seeking to augment its functional drink offerings amid steadily rising energy drink consumption, in 2020 PepsiCo acquired edgy energy drink maker Rockstar Energy for $3.85 billion.

Adding Rockstar's brands catering to energy drink stalwarts afforded PepsiCo greater exposure within the steadily expanding, highly lucrative energy segment dominated by Red Bull and Monster drinks.

The purchase of third largest energy drink provider Rockstar dovetailed with PepsiCo’s Mountain Dew Kickstart launch in 2013, providing more clout within a category growing over 7% annually since 2010.


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Seeking to capitalize on surging demand for fitness-oriented energy drinks in 2022, PepsiCo obtained a $550 million stake in Celsius Holdings, maker of powdered beverages marketed to workout enthusiasts as a pre/post exercise catalyst.

The investment provided PepsiCo an approximately 8.5% ownership share of rapidly growing Celsius while allowing the company to strategically align with shifting consumer preferences toward functional drinks overlapping sport and wellness.

Cashing in on exponential growth within the energy/sport beverage crossover space, the Celsius deal gave PepsiCo equity in a niche disrupter boasting skyrocketing sales and burgeoning lifestyle beverage credibility.