PepsiCo is investing in education, building human capital, and enabling opportunities for employment.
This move follows successful partnerships with Positive Planet and UNESCO, as well as an expansion in its potato-growing program within Myanmar.
PepsiCo re-entered Myanmar in 2012 and in 2014 teamed up with LOTTE-MGS to locally manufacture its core carbonated soft drink portfolio, including Pepsi, Mirinda and 7UP, as well as Sting energy drink.
PepsiCo says Myanmar is an attractive frontier market with strong economic growth potential and a population of approximately 53.9 million people.
PepsiCo’s continued its financial support of Myanmar’s first Centre of Excellence for Business Skills Development (CEBSD) in Yangon on February 3, 2017.
The CEBSD, founded in 2014, is the result of a public-private partnership between PepsiCo, UNESCO and the Myanmar Ministry of Education, the first initiative of its kind in Myanmar to address the issue of youth employment.
The CEBSD aims to improve employment prospects for youth in Myanmar by offering targeted courses and training in business and employability skills, career counselling, and networking opportunities.
To date, seven courses have been developed and delivered to more than 670 students.
Courses cover topics such as business skills for youth, English for the business world, and retail and hospitality management.
In total, more than 2,500 individuals have attended trainings and events since June 2014; of those, 68% were female.
Additionally, more than 80 business people and leaders from the local and international community in Yangon have engaged with the Centre as speakers, moderators, and workshop facilitators, including nine executives from PepsiCo.
The company also supports a project led by Positive Planet to alleviate poverty and reduce economic vulnerabilities in conflict-affected villages in the Kayin State, and to promote financial inclusion among low-income rural households.
The project creates cooperatives within villages that provide members sustainable access to financial services, as well as financial education training.
It also promotes business development by providing grants to support commodity or enterprise activities.
A total of 33 activities were implemented between the second half of 2015 and November 2016.
Activities included demonstration farms for crops and livestock, as well as modeling of rural enterprises such as garments retailing, concrete products, rice trading, and grocery store operations.
Successful farmers and entrepreneurs who have made their businesses profitable are invited to become community-based trainers, thereby creating local resources for technical knowledge.