Immigrant Profile: Indra Nooyi


Indra Nooyi was born on the 28th of October 1955 as Indra Krishnamurthy in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. Her parents were a conservative middle-class family as her father worked as a bank official. In 1974 she earned bachelor’s degrees in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics at the Madras Christian College of the University of Madras, India.

Immigration to the United States

She began working for Johnson & Johnson, and quickly realized that she needed to acquire a greater education for the world of business. She decided then to travel to the United States and enroll in a business school.

Nooyi moved to the United States where she attended the Yale School of Management in 1978. She graduated from Yale in 1980 with a master’s degree in Public and Private Management.

Professional Background & Achievements

Nooyi began her employment with PepsiCo in 1994 as the senior vice-presidents of corporate strategy and development. For a number of years, she worked with the CEO, Roger Enrico, to shape the company’s expansion and growth strategies. Nooyi was later made the chief financial officer (CFO) in 2000 and after one year became the president of the company.

The PepsiCo CEO Steve Reinemund, decided to retired in 2006, leaving Nooyi to become the fifth CEO of PepsiCo’s in its 44-year history. Nooyi had directed the company’s global strategy, and led to its expansion, restructuring and divestiture of restaurants. She had a major role in the acquisition of Tropicana and the merger of the Quaker Oats Company.

Contribution to the U.S. Economy

Nooyi was consistently on the ranking of Forbes magazine’s 100 Most Powerful Women. For five years in a row, Indra Nooyi was listed No.1 in Forbes annual ranking of Most Powerful Women in business from 2006 to 2010.

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