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In this photo taken May 16, 2011, file photo, the Pepsi logo is seen on a delivery truck in Springfield, Ill.
In this photo taken May 16, 2011, file photo, the Pepsi logo is seen on a delivery truck in Springfield, Ill.
(Seth Perlman/AP)

Food and Beverage

Peltz push making Pepsi’s sugar headache feel worse

After a stronger than expected year in an increasingly difficult environment for peddlers of carbonated soft drinks, the management of PepsiCo Inc. brushed aside the demands of pesky shareholder Nelson Peltz to split its beverage and snack-food arms into separate companies.

PepsiCo is wrong to dismiss its biggest critic. Its stock price has languished over the past year in the midst of a bull run for U.S. equities. Its promises of greater operating efficiencies, more aggressive share buybacks and a 15-per-cent increase in dividends are steps in the right direction, but will not be enough to dissuade Mr. Peltz, a billionaire corporate raider reborn as an activist investor, from pursuing his campaign to break the huge global company into two.