Fortune magazine unveiled its 51-person 19th annual “Most Powerful Women in the U.S.” list on September 8, with the Indian American CEO Indra Nooyi at No. 2, just behind General Motors Co. CEO and chairwoman Mary Barra.
Fortune points to Nooyi’s vision to diversify the soda giant’s beverage and food offerings, and including more healthy options, as moves that have inspired the renewed faith Wall Street investors are showing in the company.
Also, she’s yielded some pretty solid results. PepsiCo’s market cap has increased 18 percent over the last year, bringing it to a whopping $155 billion, under her watch. Nooyi, 60, is in her 10th year as the company’s CEO and back in April she appeared onstage at the Women in the World Summit in New York City and addressed the “unfinished business” of work-life balance.
She spoke candidly about her mixed feelings about being a successful businesswoman and the “huge number of sacrifices” she made as a mother to reach the top. Watch the video below where she talks about what she would say if she “had to write a letter to myself as a younger person.”
The list — compiled by Fortune editors considering size and importance of the business in the global economy, health and direction of the business, arc of the woman’s career and social and cultural influence — includes active corporate executives who run companies valued more than $1 trillion, collectively. The 60-year-old Nooyi, Fortune writes, “shows no signs of slowing down.”
Fortune added that experts believe PepsiCo is primed for more acquisitions in the health space soon as Nooyi — who ranked No. 2 on last year’s list — further diversifies out of the declining soda category. Lockheed Martin president and CEO Marillyn Hewson; IBM chairwoman, president and CEO Ginni Rometty, and Fidelity Investments president and CEO Abigail Johnson round out the top five.
In addition to the U.S.-based list, Fortune released its “International Most Powerful Women” list. Three Indian origin company heads — State Bank of India’s chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya, ICICI Bank’s chief Chanda Kochhar and Axis Bank CEO Shikha Sharma — cracked the top 20 of that list.