PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE: PEP), one of the world’s largest food and beverage companies, today signed an exclusive bottling agreement with Afghanistan Beverage Industries Ltd (ABI) to manufacture and distribute PepsiCo beverages in Afghanistan. Members of the PepsiCo and ABI executive management teams were present at the signing, which was attended by H.E. Abdul Samad, Consul General of Afghanistan in Dubai, and representatives from the Afghan Business Council in Dubai as well as the American Business Council of Dubai & the Northern Emirates.
Starting later this year, PepsiCo’s beverages will be produced at ABI’s world-class facility in Kabul, Afghanistan. As part of the deal, the plant will manufacture and distribute well-known PepsiCo brands such as Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, 7-UP, Diet 7-Up, Miranda, and Mountain Dew.
“This partnership is good for PepsiCo, but more importantly, it is good for Afghanistan,” said Jahanzeb Khan, general manager, Pakistan & Afghanistan Commercial Unit. “We take pride in partnering with companies that are exceptional both as businesses and as employers, and in this regard ABI is a perfect fit. The company has long been known for its commitment to its people, and that is a core value that we share. I’m confident that ABI’s growth plans will mean good things ahead for the Afghani people.”
ABI, whose principals have offices in the Jebel Ali Free Zone, already produces and distributes Afghanistan’s leading bottled water under the “Cristal” brand. ABI’s executive team and ownership have years of bottling and beverage industry experience. Additionally, ABI brings years of in-country know how and experience in running not only a world-class manufacturing facility, but also a well-established distribution and sales network throughout the major cities of Afghanistan, including Mazar i Sharif, Herat, Kandahar, and Jalalabad. ABI’s plant, which was built in 2005 according to international standards and with state-of-the-art equipment, now employs over 250 Afghans. ABI’s ownership trace their business roots in Afghanistan back to 1959.
“PepsiCo is one of the world’s most internationally renowned brands, and ABI looks forward to a successful and mutually beneficial partnership, which will allow both parties to further service the growing beverage industry in Afghanistan,” said Namat Khwaja, CEO of ABI.
ABI has played a significant role in the reconstruction and development process of the Afghan economy, by creating job opportunities and generating sustainable long-termcommercial activity. ABI’s new agreement with PepsiCo will provide a further boost to the economy of Afghanistan, with additional investment going into ABI’s facility and the creation of a significant number of additional employment opportunities.