PepsiCo again rejects Peltz call to split itself

PepsiCo (PEP) said Thursday in a letter to Nelson Peltz that the beverage giant's leadership is unified in rejecting the activist investor's proposal that it split its ailing North American drinks division from its snack unit.

Peltz's Trian Fund Management sent a letter to PepsiCo last week reiterating his wish that the company merge with Mondelez (MDLZ), owner of Oreo cookies and Cadbury chocolates, among other brands. He also said he planned to encourage other shareholders to back the divestiture plan.

In its letter, disclosed in a regulatory filing, PepsiCo dismissed the proposal as "financial engineering" and repeated its plan to keep the company intact.

"We have carefully studied management's extensive analysis of the current company structure and its beverage business and management's conclusions that much of Trian's data is selective and, in many instances, misused," said Ian Cook, presiding director of PepsiCo's board. "Our board and management team are confident in the thoroughness of this analysis and in the conclusion that PepsiCo's value is maximized as an integrated food and beverage company."

Peltz, who sits on Mondelez's board, is one of the food and beverage company's largest shareholders. He also owns less than 1 percent of PepsiCo shares, which have declined this year amid strong competition from Coca-Cola (KO) and other drink makers.

PepsiCo shares closed at $79.07, up 0.5 percent.


  • Alain Sherter On Twitter»

    Alain Sherter is an award-winning business journalist who has written for The Deal, MarketWatch and Thomson Financial Media.

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