NACP adds PepsiCo, Mars to list of int'l war sponsors

NACP adds PepsiCo, Mars to list of int'l war sponsors

The National Agency for Corruption Prevention of Ukraine (NACP) has added leading food corporations PepsiCo and Mars to the list of international sponsors of Russia's war.

The NACP reported this, Ukrinform saw.

According to the NACP, PepsiCo and Mars "despite statements about the reduction of their business, the cessation of advertising and production of their products, ... continue to work in Russia, paying significant taxes to its budget, thereby supporting the economy of the aggressor country."

PepsiCo produces soft drinks, juices, chips, snacks, dairy products, etc. under the main brands Chester's, Chipsy, Lay's, Mirinda, Pasta Roni, Pepsi, Propel, Sandora, 7up, Simba, Snack a Jacks, Sonric's, Tropicana, Agusha, Chudo, Slovyanochka, Sadochok, Sandorik, Mashenka, etc.

According to the NACP, the company has been operating in Russia since 1974, has 19 plants, about 20,000 employees, and 40,000 agricultural workers. In terms of net profit, PepsiCo is the fourth largest beverage and food company in Russia.

In the first year of the full-scale invasion, PepsiCo increased its revenues in Russia. Thus, the revenue of PepsiCo Holdings LLC in 2022 increased to USD 2.59 billion (or RUB 176.5 billion), with net profit increasing by 333% to USD 525 million compared to 2021. The company paid over USD 115 million (or RUB 8.29 billion) in taxes to the Russian budget.

In March 2022, the company announced that it would cease advertising and beverage production in Russia due to Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine. However, in August, the production of 7Up and Mirinda beverages under the Evervess and Frustyle brands resumed. In March 2023, the production of Pepsi beverages under the Evervess (higher price segment) and Lyubimiy (lower price segment) brands resumed. In addition, PepsiCo launched a new brand of lemonade in Russia called Russian Gift to replace the previous products. The company also continues to produce and distribute other products: chips, snacks and dairy products. According to media reports, PepsiCo's Lay's chips were found in the food rations of Russian soldiers, the NACP said.

Read also: In 2022, Philip Morris, Japan Tobacco receive over $15B revenues in Russia - expert

"The absence of sincere intentions to leave the Russian market is also indicated by the fact that the company's career page lists over 580 open vacancies in Russia," the NACP stated.

Mars is known as a manufacturer of chocolate bars. It also produces pet food, chewing gum, beverages, fast food, and canned sauces. Its main brands include Mars, Snickers, Milky Way, Twix, Bounty, M&M's, Whiskas, Pedigree, and Uncle Ben's. The corporation also owns a series of Wrigley trademarks.

According to the NACP, Mars has been operating in Russia for over 30 years, has invested USD 2.5 billion in its economy, created more than 6,000 jobs, and has 10 factories in Russia.

The company promised to reduce its business in Russia after the start of full-scale aggression. The official statement said that the company will not import or export products and any profits from Russian business will be used for humanitarian purposes.

However, Mars factories continue to operate in Russia. Compared to 2021, Mars LLC's revenue for 2022 increased to USD 2.45 billion (or RUB 176.5 billion), net profit increased by 59% to USD 377 million (or RUB 27.2 billion), and taxes paid to the Russian budget amounted to over USD 93 million (or RUB 6.76 billion).

Read also: Heineken sells its assets in Russia

The Russian branch of Mars LLC publishes announcements on recruiting new staff (over 100 current vacancies) on its recruitment website.

"By paying taxes, foreign companies help the Russian economy, in particular, the recently introduced military value added tax and income tax. All of this ultimately affects Russia's ability to wage war against Ukraine," the NACP emphasized.

As reported earlier, the NACP included leading tobacco companies Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International, which continue to do business in Russia, in the list of international sponsors of Russia’s war.

While citing and using any materials on the Internet, links to the website not lower than the first paragraph are mandatory. In addition, citing the translated materials of foreign media outlets is possible only if there is a link to the website and the website of a foreign media outlet. Materials marked as "Advertisement" or with a disclaimer reading "The material has been posted in accordance with Part 3 of Article 9 of the Law of Ukraine "On Advertising" No. 270/96-VR of July 3, 1996 and the Law of Ukraine "On the Media" No. 2849-Х of March 31, 2023 and on the basis of an agreement/invoice.

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